Five minutes can make all the difference.
The Oklahoma State soccer team used a quick burst of energy after halftime to win 2-1 against Kansas State on Sunday.
Coming out of halftime down 1-0, the Cowgirls put everything they had toward the goal and reaped the benefits of it.
In the 48th minute, Hannah Webb made a darting run down the left and sent a pass across the box. Olyvia Dowell flicked it to Grace Yochum to bring OSU level with K-State.
Two minutes later, Webb made a similar run before laying it off to Coleman, who spun her defender and gave the Cowgirls the 2-1 lead they held through the end.
“They came out of half flying,” coach Colin Carmichael said. “They just got after it, and I think Kansas State was wondering what hit them. Getting the early goal helps change momentum. Getting the second was a big deal, and then we grinded it out from then.”
Through the first 45 minutes, OSU had mostly controlled play.
The only problem was the Cowgirls (9-1-3, 2-1-1 Big 12) were losing 1-0 to K-State.
One sloppy pass from senior midfielder Julia Lenhardt led to a Wildcat breakaway in the 25th minute. That gave K-State (2-9-2, 0-4-0 Big 12) a lead that would last until half.
Carmichael has said multiple times this season that the Cowgirls tend to struggle against teams that they are better than on paper, and their match Sunday was no different.
“There’s a different mentality when you are the underdog,” Carmichael said. “I think sometimes when you are playing a team where you expect to win based on rankings, there is that human element where you sort of come out at not 100 percent.”
Junior forward Gabriella Coleman said that the players feel the same effect.
“I do feel that,” Coleman said. “I gotta keep pushing myself, the team has to keep pushing ourselves. Obviously we all want to win, so we have to fight through this. We can’t settle, even if we are winning, we have to go after everything. Any given day, a team can beat us."
The Cowgirls made sure they didn't let the underdog stun them, though. After halftime, they didn't look back, dominating the second half to come away with the victory.
“The message after the game was simple,” Carmichael said. “You can’t always play beautiful, open, attractive soccer. Sometimes the game dictates otherwise, and you have to grind out results. If you want to win a championship, sometimes you have days like that, and you have to find a way to win.”