The Iowa State Cyclones (3-12, 0-6 Big 12) lost 0-3 to the No. 15 Oklahoma State Cowgirls (12-1-3, 5-1-1 Big 12) on Sunday afternoon.
The game was highlighted by Oklahoma State’s star forward Grace Yochum.
Yochum got the Cowgirls on the board early with a goal in the seventh minute.
“When you give that initial goal up right away, it just puts more pressure on you when you do get that cross or shot than if it’s 0-0,” said coach Tony Minatta.
Yochum sliced another goal past the outstretched hands of Iowa State freshman goalkeeper Georgia Wimmer to start the second half (47th minute).
She topped it off with a wide-open finish in the 88th minute to cap the hat trick.
Yochum is one of the Big 12’s premier scorers and the three goals brought her total to 11 on the season.
The score may have been 3-0 but that doesn’t show how hard we fought as a team, and we just need to continue to battle,” said Iowa State junior forward Courtney Powell.
The pressure defense of the Cowgirls made it difficult for the Cyclones to advance the ball past the midfield.
Fouls for the Cyclones made it even harder for the team to dig out of the early hole.
19 fouls and four yellow cards were the most issued to the team in a game this year.
“It is hard when some of the calls don’t go your way, but you just have to talk yourself out of it and focus on the game,” said junior forward Kassi Ginther.
Oklahoma State’s offense came into the game averaging close to three goals a game.
Although the Cowgirls put up three against Iowa State, Minatta said the team still did well defensively albeit the two early half goals.
“Besides the first ten minutes of the game, I thought they did well slowing down their offense,” Minatta said. “If you look at the game and the opportunities we created it’s frustrating considering you fight so hard and aren’t rewarded for it because I felt like we at least deserved a goal today.”
One area the team is looking to improve going forward is the crosses for scoring opportunities.
Powell, Iowa State’s leading scorer with three goals on the year, said it should come with execution.
“I think we’re getting there but it’s just a matter of finishing them,” Powell said.
Oklahoma’s State only conference loss was to the No. 20 Texas Tech Red Raiders, a team Iowa State lost to in double overtime earlier in the season.
That early start made it tough for Iowa State to stay in the game, with the second half slipping away on the scoreboard.
“When we played Texas Tech, we were able to weather that first 15-minute start and not give anything up and get our confidence up but it’s just really hard to battle out of that hole against a quality team like these guys,” Minatta said.
With the win, the Cowgirls extended their winning streak to five games.
Meanwhile, the Cyclones losing streak drops to seven games.
“This stretch is a testament to their character (the players) for continuing to fight but we just need to find a way to get through this week because we can win these next two games to get into the Big 12 Tournament,” Minatta said.
Iowa State will head to Austin, Texas, to battle the Longhorns on Thursday at 7 p.m.