Sept. 5, 2008
DENTON, Texas -- The Sooner soccer team dropped a heartbreaker in overtime at North Texas on Friday at Mean Green Soccer Stadium. Oklahoma lost 3-2 in its first overtime game of the season despite holding a 2-1 lead at halftime, an advantage that also lasted until the 84th minute of the contest.
Kelli Lunsford, who also scored the game tying goal, netted the game winner from 20 yards out at the 91:51 mark. The ball was played over the top of the OU defense and a deflection put Lunsford in position to find the back of the upper right corner of the net.
The loss drops the Sooners’ overall record to 1-3 while the Mean Green stayed unbeaten at 3-0.
The game-tying goal for North Texas was also scored in similar fashion as an OU header could not clear a corner kick out of the zone and Lunsford fired the ball into the upper right corner of the net from 35 yards out.
“This really is a disappointing loss for this team,” said OU Head Coach Nicole Nelson. “You have to give North Texas credit, especially after two nicely played goals were scored late in the game.”
The Sooners fell behind 1-0 in the 20th minute, but rallied to score two goals in the first half and established a lead that would last late into the second half for the next 39 minutes.
OU’s Whitney Palmer scored her third goal of the season at the 35:43 mark to tie the game at one goal apiece. Palmer beat UNT goalkeeper Mandy Hall to the far post after Ashley Farrand assisted on the play.
With less than a minute to play in the first session, Abbey Golliher gave OU its first lead of the contest. The freshman scored her first career goal after one of six corner kicks in the game by the Sooners was deflected back to her feet.
The Sooners and Mean Green each recorded three corner kicks in the first half and OU held a 7-4 edge in shots. However, North Texas connected for seven more corners in the second half and the 10-6 advantage proved to be the difference in the game.
“I was pleased with the first 80 or so minutes of the game,” added Nelson. “But we have to develop a better sense of urgency on our set pieces. We’ve been executing a lot of the things that we’ve been working on in practice, but we have to learn how to hold onto a lead and finish a game. This is a young and inexperienced group and we have to keep working harder every day.”
The Sooners return home to host Rice on Sunday at 1 p.m. Sunday’s game between OU and Rice will be the first meeting between the programs. The Owls played at Oklahoma State at Friday.