Sept. 27, 2009
NORMAN, Okla. -- Whitney Palmer scored two early first half goals and Kelsey Kraft added the game winner in the 61st minute as Oklahoma knocked off No. 13 Texas A&M on Sunday, 3-2, at home.
"It's a huge win for our program," said OU Head Coach Nicole Nelson. "Our team came out and beat a very, very good Texas A&M team. A team that beat Portland, the No. 2 team in the nation, two weeks ago, 3-1. So, it's a great job executing our game plan and the girls really staying focused at the task at hand."
The win was the first for the Sooners in 15 all-time meetings with the Aggies (6-4, 1-1), a perennial top 25 team and contender in the Big 12 each season.
"That is the best team in our league right now and our girls know that," added Nelson. "So that will carry them a long ways from a confidence standpoint."
The 3-2 victory gives OU a 6-4-1 overall mark and a 1-1 record in the Big 12. It also snapped an 11-game skid for the Sooners against ranked opponents.
Palmer's two scores, tallied in the first eight minutes of the game, pushed her season total to 10 in 2009, the second most in the Big 12 and the second most by a Sooner in a single season. In addition, Palmer's 24 career goals ranks third all-time at Oklahoma.
"Whitney coming out and getting those two goals early was everything. It was the difference in the game," said Nelson. "We have said it time and time again, Whitney Palmer is a program changer. She is arguably the best forward in this conference and she showed it today. She is a handful to deal with."
OU held a 2-1 halftime advantage and after Texas A&M tied the game up at two goals apiece in the 55th minute, Kraft provided the heroics six minutes later.
The goal was the second of the season for Kraft and fourth of her career. It was also her second game-winner of the season (Sam Houston) and came after she recorded the assist on Palmer's second goal earlier in the contest.
The upset did not come without a strong performance on defense led by freshman goalkeeper Kelsey Devonshire. The Sooners faced 32 Aggie shots in the 90 minutes of play, including 11 on goal, but Devonshire made nine saves to hold Texas A&M at bay.
Katie Hamilton had both of Texas A&M's goals but it was not enough as OU improved to 6-2 at home in 2009.
Palmer finished with a game-high six shots, including five on goal as Texas A&M switched goalkeepers at halftime after Kelly Dyer gave up the scores. Kristin Arnold had split time with Dyer throughout the season and allowed the game winner despite making three saves.
The Sooners return to action next weekend to battle Colorado and Texas Tech in the first Big 12 road games of the season. The Sooners battle the Buffs at 5 p.m. (CT) on Friday, Oct. 2 and concludes the weekend on Sunday, Oct. 4 at 1 p.m. in Lubbock.
The road trip is the start of an eight-game stretch to conclude the regular season that will feature the Sooners on the road in five contests.