LUBBOCK, Texas – For every team that has visited Oklahoma State’s newly-built Neal Patterson Stadium, the atmosphere had proven too much. That was until Texas Tech (10-3-1, 2-2-1) handed the Cowgirls a 1-0 loss Friday night. It was the program’s second-ever win in Stillwater, and first since 1997. It was head coach Tom Stone’s first time beating Oklahoma State since 2012.
“This is their first loss on this field, and it’s a big deal for us,” said Stone following the win. “At the end of the day, we had to have points today. The team knew it, and we didn’t mess around.”
The two teams traded possession for much of the first half, and despite there being a combined 12 shots and five corners between the two, neither was able to find the back of the net. Stone countered a loose Cowgirl midfield by throwing a wide player into the middle, which he believed added pressure and allowed Tech to push the ball forward.
“Our forwards were giving their back four trouble,” he said. “We knew that as their confidence grew, so would the confidence of the rest of our team. Hopefully we’d get the game-winner out of that, which we did.”
The game-winner came off the foot of Ally Griffin, who in the 67th minute was taken down inside the 18-yard box and awarded a penalty kick. Griffin, who successfully converted her first career PK earlier in the year against Oregon State, did the same with her opportunity Friday night to give Tech a huge 1-0 lead.
The goal was Griffin’s seventh career game-winning goal, moving her into sole possession of seventh in program history.
With time dwindling down, the Cowgirls put all of their players up as they sought a potential game-tying goal. To counter, Stone made the tactical decision of inputting freshman Alyssa D’Aloise to defend their best player.
“This is a kid that hasn’t played in three weeks, and she comes off the bench and gives us five and gives us a big header and a clearance and just kind of gets in the way,” Stone said. “She did a great job.”
When all was said and done, the Red Raiders had successfully fought off three OSU corners in the final seven minutes of play.
“They launched everything at us, and we had to get first balls out and pressure second balls,” Stone said. “The last few minutes, you’re just trying to clear it and stay organized, and we did that.”
The three points the Red Raiders gained from the road victory bring their season total to seven in the Big 12. The 10 wins on the season surpasses the total from each of the last two years.
After starting on a strong note, Tech will continue their road trip with a two-game stint in Kansas next weekend. They will take on Kansas State in Manhattan on Friday before heading to Lawrence for a match with Kansas on Sunday.