No. 18 Jayhawks fall to No. 4 Texas A&M, 3-0
COLLEGE STATION, Texas – Kansas soccer dropped its first match of the season, falling 3-0 at No. 4 Texas A&M in the final outing of nonconference play Sunday afternoon inside Ellis Field.
The loss saw Kansas go to 6-1-2 on the year and end its nine-match unbeaten streak, a program record. Texas A&M improved to 10-0-0 in 2018, the best start in its history.
In their third top-25 game of the season, the Jayhawks went up against a torrid Aggies’ offense that proved to be a tough match-up. After nearly 40 minutes of scoreless action, TAMU struck first with a shot from 12 yards out by Aggie Abby Grace Cooper. The goal sent Kansas to the halftime locker room at a deficit for the first time this season.
KU kept within a goal for nearly 20 minutes into the second half until a pair of Texas A&M goals put the game out of reach. Addie McCain slammed in her third of the year in the 65th minute with a strike from nearly 22 yards out. Ninety seconds later, Aggie junior Ally Watt made the Jayhawks pay for a defensive miscue, sending in her eighth of the year off a rebound.
The match ended with KU and TAMU level in shots, each with 12 apiece, however the Aggies managed to put eight of their 12 tries on frame, while Kansas just managed two of their shots on target.
Head Coach Mark Francis
On Sunday’s result:
“I think the score line is a lot more flattering to them, but you’ve got to give them credit, that’s why they’re unbeaten and (ranked) fourth in the country. I thought the game was very even in terms of the possession chances, but they’re very clinical. The first goal and the third goal for us, we made defensive errors and their kids finished. We had probably four or five good chances that we didn’t finish. I think that was the difference in the game. To be at the level that they’re at – that’s what it takes, and I think for us it’s a little bit of a lesson that we’ve got to be a bit more clinical at each end and not make mental mistakes, especially when you’re playing against a team with the quality of A&M.”
On positives that the team will take from this top-five matchup:
“It wasn’t a game where you get beat three to nothing and you barely touch the ball and you barely cross the half. The game was very, very back and forth. If you’d ask their staff they’d say the same thing, but again it comes down to those key moment in the game in front of either goal, but today we just got punished for a couple of mental lapses and we weren’t quite clinical enough in our attack methods.”
- The Jayhawks’ 0-1 deficit at the half marked the first time KU has trailed at halftime this season.
- Kansas’ unbeaten streak ended at nine games, the longest undefeated streak in program history. The streak dated back to the end of the 2017 season, which began with a 1-1 draw against TCU on Nov. 1 in the quarterfinals of the Big 12 Championship
- Texas A&M’s three goals are the most allowed by Kansas since a 3-1 loss on Oct. 22, 2017 against then-No. 19 ranked Oklahoma State.
- Freshman goalkeeper Sarah Peters’ five saves are the most of the freshman’s career.
- The Aggies’ 12 shots tied the most allowed by Kansas in the 2018 season.
The Jayhawks will start Big 12 play on Friday, Sept. 21 when the Oklahoma Sooners visit Lawrence. KU and OU will kick off at Rock Chalk Park at 7 p.m. in the match that will be televised on ESPN+. Two days later, Kansas will host the defending league champion Oklahoma State on Sunday, Sept. 23. The contest will be KU’s annual Jayhawks for a Cure match and is slated to begin at 1 p.m. on ESPN+.
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