Cowgirls shutout Central Oklahoma in physical match

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OSU midfielder Hayley Ledford looks on during the Oklahoma State vs. University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma soccer exhibition match on Saturday, February 29, 2020 at Neal Patterson Stadium in Stillwater.

Players were pushing, grabbing jerseys, colliding and picking themselves off the turf.

But this wasn’t Bedlam or the playoffs, nor was it a close contest. It was an Oklahoma State women’s soccer 7-0 shutout in the spring exhibition against the Central Oklahoma Bronchos.

In it, there were three attempted penalty kicks, two of which resulted in goals for OSU. There were also ten free kick opportunities, as well as a knee injury to UCO’s Brooke Moore in which she needed an escort to the locker room.

Coach Colin Carmichael said he always wants his players to play with an edge, but never cross the line into dirty play.

“In the spring, I think both teams would agree that you don’t want anything outrageous, but physicality is a part of the game,” Carmichael said. “That’s what we’re going to see next fall, so it doesn’t bother us if the other team wants to play physical.”

Midfielder Grace Yochum scored on the first of OSU’s penalties in the 15th minute. She said that the team’s mentality is the most important thing to build on in the spring.

“No matter who we’re playing, we’re going to give them 100%,” Yochum said. “We’re going to fight like the Big 12 title is on the line.”

Along with mentality, Carmichael’s main goal in these exhibition games is to propel the development of the underclassmen on the roster. 

“Hayley (Ledford) today did really well with her two goals. Rebekah (George) and Sophie (Green) got a lot of minutes too,” Carmichael said. “It’s fun because they worked really hard in the fall but didn’t get rewarded. Hopefully they develop to a higher level where they can contribute this fall.”

Carmichael also added that he’s particularly excited to give more meaningful minutes to freshman Megan Haines.

Haines scored her first goal as a Cowgirl last week against USAO. She added to her scoring output Saturday by attempting two penalties, converting on one.

At just 5 feet 4 inches, she’s one of the shortest players on the field. 

“I know a lot of the other girls will be bigger, so I want to work on getting stronger,” Haines said. “But I’m also still scoring goals now and making stuff happen up top, so I’m enjoying getting more minutes and hopefully I’ll keep earning more.”