By AnnaGrace Hale | Sports Writer
Baylor soccer could not find the back of the net Sunday afternoon against No. 12 Texas Christian University resulting in a 2-0 loss at Betty Lou Mays Field. The Bears started off strong, but the Horned Frogs struck in the second half, burying two balls in the goal.
Head coach Michelle Lenard said the root of Baylor’s (4-10-2, 2-6-0 Big 12) issues come down to each individual player losing their one-on-one battles. TCU (10-3-4, 5-1-2 Big 12) was first to 50-50 balls and created more opportunities on goal.
“When our tactical strategy limited [TCU], their individual players started winning 1v1 battles and we weren’t able to,” Lenard said. “We got in several times, but it resulted in nothing, not a shot, not a cross.”
Creating offensive was a struggle for the green and gold. The Horned Frogs outshot the Bears 20-4. The only shot on goal for Baylor came from senior forward Elizabeth Kooiman in the fifth minute, but TCU’s goalkeeper deflected the ball away.
Junior keeper Madison Martin started in the goal for Baylor. This is the Texas Tech transfer’s second start of conference play, taking the spot of junior keeper Lauren Traywick.
Martin recorded six saves, but could not defend the two shots from TCU’s Skylar Heinrich and Gracie Brian.
In the 55th minute Brian headed the ball past Martin after a pinpoint service from the left side across the box. In the 72nd minute Heinrich tapped the ball in from inside the six-yard box.
“Their big-time players showed up and made plays,” Lenard said. “It’s not that we’re completely lacking opportunities on the ball or time on the ball. We do have enough that we should at least be threatening. But in that final phase, in that final third especially, we just don’t have enough out of individuals to take players on, break players down and make a play.”
Baylor closes out its regular season play on Thursday at home against Oklahoma State University at 7 p.m. The last time the two teams met, the green and gold won 2-1 in Stillwater. This game is an opportunity for the squad to secure its spot in the Big 12 Tournament in Round Rock if it can win.
“We absolutely can do that in that game,” Lenard said. “We looked a little fatigued and tired too… So we’re going to rest. Get [the players] off their feet. It’s late in the season, and hopefully come out fresh and put our best foot forward on Thursday.”