⚽️ Kansas Falls in Season Opener to Ohio State
LAWRENCE, Kan. — The Kansas Jayhawks dropped their season opener on Thursday night 1-0 to Ohio State at Rock Chalk Park. A goal in the 69th minute by Ohio State’s Emma Seers was the difference.
After 45 minutes the teams remained even at 0-0. Both teams had a couple chances in the first half but neither side was able to convert.
KU nearly took the lead in the third minute of the game on a corner kick when freshman forward Maree Shinkle sent the ball over the crossbar. The Jayhawks had another opportunity in the 16th minute when super-senior midfielder Rylan Childers sent a through ball to her sister, sophomore midfielder Raena Childers, but she could not sneak the ball in the far post.
After Ohio State took the lead in the second half, Kansas had two good opportunities to tie the game. In the 72nd minute, freshman forward Lexi Watts put a shot on goal that was stopped by the keeper. Then, in the 83rd minute, junior forward Shira Elinav narrowly missed connecting on a deflected shot off the foot of Shinkle.
“If you look at the stats, the game was very even…this group does a great job competing,” head coach Mark Francis said. “We competed with [Ohio State] and made the game tough for them. For them it’s a good win on the road and for us it’s a tough loss, not a bad loss, but a tough loss.”
Ohio State (1-0) held a 10-7 advantage in shots, despite shots on goal being the same at 4-4. Elinav and Watts combined for the four shots on goal with two apiece. Each team also had nine corner kicks.
KU is now 13-8-3 in season openers under Francis and 14-11-3 all-time in regular-season openers.
Kansas (0-1) will host its second consecutive Big Ten opponent when Northwestern comes to Lawrence on Sunday afternoon (Aug. 21). The game will kick off at 1 p.m. CT and be broadcast on Big 12 NOW on ESPN+ and the Jayhawk Sports Network. Fans can purchase KU Soccer tickets by contacting the Kansas ticket office at 785-864-3141 or by visiting the ticketing page here.