Frogs rally to defeat Kansas on PKs, advance to Big 12 semifinals

0
374

Print Article
A late spurt from TCU capped a strong rally in the second half to send the game into overtime, a match that the Horned Frogs ultimately won in penalty kicks.

“Credit to Kansas for battling for 110 minutes, but I thought our qualities came through over the course of play,” head coach Eric Bell said. “We created a bunch of chances. I thought we did really well.”

The Horned Frogs dominated the Jayhawks in the first half, but they were not rewarded for their efforts as they entered the half in a scoreless tie.

The early stages of the first half provided the Frogs with multiple quality scoring chances to break the scoreless tie. A corner kick in the sixth minute bounced around in the box and made its way in front of junior midfielder Kayla Hill. She had a point-blank opportunity in front of the goal but was unable to get a shot off.

The Frogs outshot the Jayhawks in the first 45 minutes nine to four, and sophomore goalkeeper Katie Lund fended off three shots on goal from Kansas to keep the game scoreless.

The Frogs came out of the gates in the second half with a determination to take the lead. TCU earned a corner kick in the 48th minute which led to two quality chances from Heckendorn and sophomore midfielder Tara Smith. Kansas’ goalkeeper Maddie Dobyns made two remarkable saves, barely deflecting the ball away from the net with the tip of her cleat and her fingertips.

The Jayhawks broke the tie in the 62nd minute. A TCU foul on the outside of the eighteen-yard box gave the Jayhawks a free kick. Forward Katie McClure fired the ball past Lund’s outstretched arms to give Kansas the lead.

The Frogs finally found a way to score off their eighth corner on the night. A cross from Heckendorn was punched out of harm’s way by Dobbyns. The ball found Hill in the center of the box who headed the ball into the net, squeezing the ball just under the crossbar to pull even. The goal was Hill’s second of the season and seventh of her career.

Heckendorn’s assist was her fifth of the season, 21st of her career and moves her into sixth place in TCU history with 53 career points.

The final 11 minutes of regulation were competitive and both teams alternated quality possessions, but neither was able to find a game-winner. The two teams headed to an overtime period. This match tied a school record of overtime matches played for the Frogs, totaling seven on the season.

After two scoreless overtime periods, the match ended in penalty kicks.

In the shootout, the Frogs outscored the Jayhawks 4-2. A brilliant block from Lund on Kansas’ first shot set the tone for the rest of the shootout. TCU’s four goals came from Hill, senior defender Ryan Williams, Ryan and Ganter.

Bell praised Lund’s strong play and presence in net on the night. Lund made a season-high seven saves in the match.

“Big saves in the PKs and big saves in the game,” Bell said. “She had a very good, commanding presence throughout the course of the game. She made a big save late in the second half. She did exactly what we asked her to do.”

TCU will continue play in the Big 12 Championship Friday evening against West Virginia. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. in Kansas City.