The Ohio State women’s soccer team saw its season come to an end with a 3-1 loss at Kentucky in the first round of the NCAA tournament. The offensive pressure was the difference maker for the Wildcats, outshooting the Buckeyes 26-9 in the game, and 14-5 in the decisive second half.
“Kentucky has a great squad and presented a lot of problems for us,” coach Lori Walker said in a press release. “We always try to play as long as we can until we run into a team that is better than us and that’s what happened (Friday), so hats off to Kentucky.”
Neither team scored in the first half, but the Buckeyes had to dodge some bullets to keep the Wildcats off the board. Kentucky freshman forward Zoe Swift had a shot from 15 yards out in the 22nd minute, but OSU sophomore defender Marisa Wolf blocked her shot.
The Wildcats held a 5-0 lead in corner kicks and a 12-4 advantage in shots as the teams went to the locker room after the first half.
The scoreless tie was broken in the 51st minute, with a goal from Kentucky senior forward Caitlin Landis, coming off a rebound of a corner kick from teammate and sophomore midfielder Olivia Jester.
Kentucky junior defender Arin Gilliland would get her 13th goal of the season just moments later, a breakaway goal that made the Kentucky lead 2-0 in the 54th minute.
The Buckeyes would not go down without a fight, however. Freshmen forwards Lindsay Agnew and Nichelle Prince connected on a goal that would cut the Wildcats lead to 2-1 in the 73rd minute. The goal for Prince was her 13th of the year, which tied her for second on the all-time single-season goals list.
The final tally of the game came just three minutes later from Kentucky’s Swift.
Even though the result was not what the Buckeyes wanted, Walker saw it as experience for her young team.
“We started eight freshmen or sophomores and gained a ton of experience being here,” Walker said in the release.
The senior class for the Buckeyes finished with the second-most wins, 55, in program history, and appeared in the NCAA tournament every year on campus.
“Every class contributes in their own way, and what I’ve enjoyed about all five of them is what quality people they are,” Walker said after the game against Northwestern Oct. 20. “You know, when you’ve got great people to work with the rest of it is very easy.”