Oklahoma State won for the seventh time in its last nine games Friday as the Cowgirls knocked off TCU, 1-0, on a cold, windy, rainy night at the Cowgirl Soccer Complex.
Madison Mercado's goal in the 36th minute proved to be the game winner, and Rosa Medina made a pair of clutch saves late as OSU improved to 7-7-1 overall and 2-1-1 in Big 12 Conference play.
“It was a tough effort,” said OSU head coach Colin Carmichael. “With the (weather) conditions and the way TCU is a physical, direct team, well organized and tough to break down, we knew it was going to be one of those nights. In the first half, for about 20 minutes, we were excellent. We got the one goal, and I thought with the wind at our back we probably needed to get the second. But we dug in and found a way in the second half.
“I'm really proud. Last week, we called out our team about mental toughness and finishing games and against (Texas) Tech and again tonight, they showed it.”
OSU dominated the attack in the opening half, outshooting the Horned Frogs 15-2 prior to intermission, and it paid off at the 35:23 mark when Kelsey Bass delivered a long pass that Mercado headed to the far post from 12-yards out. The goal was Mercado's fourth of the season, tying her for the team lead, while Bass recorded her first assist of the year.
TCU (7-5-2, 0-2-2) did not pose much of a threat in the opening half, but the visitors were able to create a few more chances after the break.
The best opportunities for the Horned Frogs came very late, but Medina came up big as she recorded two of her three saves in the final 2 1Ž2 minutes of the match.
The first of those stops came in the 88th minute when Jill Finnerty blasted an 18-yard shot headed for the far upper post that Medina leapt and saved over the crossbar.
That highlight reel save was followed up by a diving stop on a header by Michelle Prokof with 17 ticks left on the clock, a save that sealed the win for the Cowgirls and gave Medina her fifth shutout of the season.
“(Medina) has been fantastic,” Carmichael said. “I can only think of one goal that I would say was her fault, and that was in the first game of the season. There's been maybe one or two others that you thought maybe she could have saved it, but she's been very consistent and make those big saves when we needed them.
“She just saved a win for us there in the last minutes so she deserves a ton of credit.”
The Cowgirls finished with a 19-8 advantage in shots, with six of those on goal, while TCU recorded a 7-3 edge on corner kicks.
OSU returns to action Sunday when the Cowgirls host Baylor at 1 p.m.