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Aggies avenged: Late regulation equalizer helps OSU to tie

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Kim Rodriguez

Kim Rodriguez defends the Cowgirls box as the Aggies attempt to score. 

Gabriella Coleman has been thinking about this game since May. 

Oklahoma State tied Texas A&M 1-1 on Sunday at Neal Patterson Stadium in Stillwater. 

OSU (3-3-1) already lost to No. 15 Texas A&M (4-2-1) in the Sweet Sixteen of the 2020 NCAA Tournament and Coleman wouldn’t let it happen again. 

Not at home.

Fueled with the obsession of revenge, Coleman, a forward, assisted defender Hannah Webb to equalize with four minutes left in regulation. 

“I’m glad that we got a goal because I mean I feel like I was panicking a little bit that my shot didn’t go in, but I’m happy that I contributed to Webb’s goal and that’s all that matters,” Coleman said. 

Webb, a senior wing back, tied the game in the 87th minute with her goal, which forced overtime that inevitably ended in a tie. But it was all A&M leading up to it.  

The Aggies established a patient attack early on while dominating possession. 

Twelve minutes into the contest, Mallie Hayes, a TAMU forward, ventured into their attacking third untouched and unmarked. With her right leg, she launched the ball into the back corner of the net, leaving goalkeeper Evie Vitali in frustration.

“She (Vitali) was mad the goal,” Carmichael said. “She thinks she could have saved that, but I thought it was a heck of a goal myself.”

Vitali, a freshman, collected six saves, a career high. A&M shot 20 times.

Trailing at the half, Carmichael looked to his bench for assistance. 

Hannah Chance, a freshman forward from Broken Arrow, made her collegiate debut and recorded a shot with a brace on her left knee.  Midfielders Shyann McClary and Megan Haines provided relief for defender Kim Rodriguez, who returned from a right ankle injury.

“I got to give immense credit to those kids who came off the bench,” Carmichael said. “They gave us a boost and fresh legs and they made a difference.”

Rodriguez supplied experience in the defensive midfield, but minutes before halftime, another star was gone. 

Forward Grace Yochum collided with TAMU’s Karlina Sample during a slide tackle and she didn’t return to the game. Yochum walked to the locker room under her own power with a right knee injury, the same knee that kept her out of preseason. 

She watched the second half from the bench with a pair of crutches, a bag of ice taped around her knee.

“We can’t seem to catch a break with injuries right now,” Carmichael said. “It looked like there was sort of knee-to-knee contact. Nothing malicious or anything.”

Carmichael said he did not have an injury update from Cowgirl trainer Todd Gerlt.

But in the end, however, the fifth-year players finished the job for the Cowgirls.

“No one likes a tie, but I think in the context of our last two games being losses and playing a really good team, I think we’ll accept that tie and be pretty pleased and proud of it,” coach Colin Carmichael said.”

sports.ed@ocolly.com