Jamie Markaverich scored two goals as Oklahoma State ended its two-game losing skid with a, 3-0, victory over Baylor at the Cowgirl Soccer Complex on Friday.
OSU improved its season record to 10-3-2 and 3-3 in Big 12 play, while BU dropped to 3-10-1 and 1-5 in conference action.
“It was not the prettiest game, but we did what we needed to do to win,” head coach Karen Hancock said. “We came out sharp and got a goal early. We were able to use that for confidence.”
Markaverich assumed the scoring role in the absence of OSU’s leading scorer Jesyca Rosholt. Markaverich gave the Pokes the early lead just 1 1/2 minutes into the game. Angelika Feldbacher sent a cross into the penalty area that Baylor goalkeeper Ashley Holder tried to clear, but it went right to the feet of Markaverich who put it in the empty net.
Neither team mounted much of a scoring threat the rest of the half. The two teams combined for only eight shots in the first half as the two teams played in the middle of the field for most of the half. The 1-0 advantage held up for the Cowgirls as the two teams went into the lockerroom at halftime.
Baylor came out roaring in the second half. The Bears had their best scoring opportunities in the first five minutes of the half. Tiffany Boshers had an open look at the goal that OSU keeper Jeanne Rankin saved. A couple minutes later Anna Schuch had another open look at the goal that she shot wide.
The Cowgirls capitalized where the Bears could not. In the 55th minute, Yolanda Odenyo played a ball behind the Baylor defense that Markaverich got to and scored for her second goal of the game to put OSU on top 2-0.
“I think our gameplan in the second half was pretty effective,” Hancock said. “We absorbed a lot of their pressure and knew they would have to come after us. We were able to get a counter-attack goal and made it even harder on them.”
The Bears continued to put pressure on the OSU defense as they out shot the Cowgirls 12-6 in the second half. It was not enough for Baylor, and Ashlyn Brantley iced the game for OSU as she sent a shot into the corner of the net with five minutes remaining.
The Cowgirl defense played strong throughout the game. Katie Lacey preserved the shutout late in the second half when she cleared a ball off the goal line. Rankin played all 90 minutes in goal and recorded four saves to earn the shutout.
“Katie did a great job tonight,” Hancock added. “her goal line save in the last few minutes of the game was awfully pretty, but even before that she was dominant in the air in the middle of the field. Baylor had a difficult time coming up the gut of our team and a big reason was because Katie was there.”
The Cowgirls resume play this weekend when 20th-ranked Texas A&M comes to town for a 1 p.m. game on Sunday at the Cowgirl Soccer Complex.