No. 8 Texas A&M Outlasts KU in Overtime
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Amy Berend’s goal in the 94th minute broke a scoreless tie and lifted No. 8 Texas A&M past the University of Kansas, 1-0, in a Big 12 soccer match Sunday at the Jayhawk Soccer Complex.
The win improves the Aggies to 10-3-1 overall and 6-0 in conference play, while KU drops to 7-6 and 2-3 in the Big 12.
“It’s disappointing because the team played extremely well, especially in the second half,” head coach Mark Francis said. “Sometimes in soccer you can dominate the majority of the game and not win. I think we need to use this game as a benchmark of what our team is capable of.”
For much of the afternoon, the Jayhawks outplayed the eighth-ranked team in the country. KU had several more opportunities than the visiting Aggies, but couldn’t finish.
Texas A&M took advantage of a misplayed ball in the attacking third to earn its sixth conference win of the season.
Aggie forward Ashlee Pistorius took control of a loose ball on the near side of the field, and sent a pass to the top of the box where Berend dribbled once and fired a shot past KU goalkeeper Julie Hanley low to the far corner at 93:21. It was Berend’s third goal of the season.
The end was not fitting with the way the Jayhawks played through much of the contest. After being outshot 8-3 in the first half, KU turned the tables and outdid the Aggies 13-2 in the second and forced goalkeeper Kristin Arnold into making seven saves.
KU had the better chances as well. In the 15th minute, senior Holly Gault took advantage of a misplayed ball by the Aggie defense and made a long run toward the goal. However, Arnold made a leaping save on the senior’s chip from 15 feet out.
Gault had another one-on-one with Arnold later in the match, but the Aggie freshman was to the task once again. This time, after being faked one way, Arnold make a kick save on the short side to keep the contest scoreless.
In the 76th minute, KU had another golden opportunity when senior Jessica Kilpatrick had a step on her defender deep in A&M territory and received a cross just inside the 18-yard box. However, Kilpatrick’s header went just wide of the far post.
The Jayhawks outshot Texas A&M 15-13, and had eight corner kicks to Texas A&M’s six. Sophomore midfielder Missy Geha led the way with four shots, while Gault, Kilpatrick and sophomore Jessica Bush had two a piece.
For the seventh straight match, Hanley and the KU defense held the opposition to one goal or less. On Sunday, the Jayhawks allowed the eighth-ranked team in the country just 13 shots, 10 below their season average.
The Aggies also came into the match scoring nearly three goals per contest, but were held to one in over 93 minutes of play.
KU will look to bounce back with a pair of Big 12 matches on the road next weekend, first at Iowa State on Friday at 7 p.m., and then Sunday at Missouri at 1 p.m.
KU notes: The 1-0 defeat was KU’s sixth straight contest that ended with a 1-0 score. The Jayhawks have not played in a match that ended with a different score since blanking UCF, 2-0 on Sept. 17 … Sophomore Kristin Graves made her second consecutive start this weekend after participating in her first eight matches this season as a reserve … Eighth-ranked Texas A&M was the highest ranked team to visit the Jayhawk Soccer Complex since the Aggies came to Lawrence as the third-ranked team in the country on Oct. 5, 2003.