The Cougars celebrate during their 3-2 win against Oklahoma. Photo by BYU Photo/Jaren Wilkey.
It’s time to give a long overdue shout out to the BYU women’s soccer team. These ladies have been playing at an elite level for the better part of the 21st century. They made a spectacular run to the quarterfinals of the NCAA tournament last season. And this season, they’re ranked 11th in the nation with a 5-1-1 record.
That 5th win, however… Well, that was a sight to behold.
Coming off a stunning loss to UC Irvine, the Cougars stayed cold against Thursday night’s opponent, the Oklahoma Sooners. The magic touch was definitely with the ladies from Norman, as they built a comfy 2-0 lead heading into halftime.
All things considered, it’d be hard to blame the Cougars for having a letdown. Their previous 3 games yielded a 1-1-1 record, with a last-minute win, a last-minute loss and a 2 OT 0-0 draw – all grueling matches, to say the least. And against Oklahoma, despite the Cougars’ strong play, all the bounces were going the Sooners’ way. With that in mind, the 2-0 halftime score definitely set up the second half as a litmus test for the Cougars’ overall toughness.
To their credit, the Cougars kept their heads up and kept attacking aggressively. With seven minutes to go in the game, BYU finally got one to go their way; freshman defender Ella Johnson came through with a brilliant strike from the edge of the box. A minute later, Sooner defender Kathryn Watson pulled down a Cougar attacker in the box, yielding a red card and a penalty kick. 2-2 with the easy PK down the middle.
At that point, many teams might have been content with the tie after the furious comeback.
Not so for the Cougars.
Less than five minutes after their first goal, the BYU attack surged forward and found the back of the net one more time for the 3-2 advantage. An incredible and improbable comeback, to be sure.
WCC fans should look forward to a great slate of conference games. With BYU leading the charge and Portland and Santa Clara also nationally ranked, there should be no shortage of excitement on the field this season.
Courtesy of byucougars.com, post-game interviews and highlights.
Courtesy of BYUtv Sports, post-game commentary and highlights.