Midfielders Gracie Brian and Camryn Lancaster shined on Sunday for No. 10 TCU soccer as the Frogs captured a 3-1 win at home against the University of Houston Cougars.
After a loss to Baylor and a draw against the University of Texas at Austin, the Horned Frogs were looking for a way to get back in business with an out-of-conference match.
“We wanted to be exposed and tested,” head coach Eric Bell said. “The non-conference portion of the season has definitely gotten us ready for the conference season.”
TCU’s backline started off the game strong against a fast Houston offense. In the fourth minute, defender Brenna Brosam broke up a potential scoring opportunity for Houston with a great defensive stop.
Most of the half was played in the midfield, but neither team was able to capitalize on any goal-scoring opportunities in the offensive third.
The Horned Frogs had several looks from strikers Lancaster, Messiah Bright and Skylar Heinrich, but ended the half scoreless. The Cougars outshot the Frogs 7-6 in the first 45 minutes.
TCU started the second half with a new intensity. The team played a tight defense against Houston and worked to feed the ball outside to the wings on the offensive end.
In the 58th minute, Bright had a great move to beat a Houston defender and cut across the 18, laying the ball off to Brian at the top of the box who placed a perfect shot into the top corner.
Brian did not stop there. In the 63rd minute, she fought her way through two Cougar defenders to knock a ball into the back of the net, putting the Frogs up 2-0.
TCU kept high pressure on Houston, not allowing the Cougars to get off any threatening shots. Goalkeeper Lauren Kellett only clocked 2 saves for the second half.
The Frogs’ third goal came with eight minutes left in the game. Bright worked inside the six to draw the attention of three Houston defenders, allowing Lancaster to find a gap and fire off a shot just outside the reach of the Houston goalkeeper.
Despite a late Houston goal off a set-piece, TCU secured the match to improve to 9-2-1 on the season.
“I’m happy to come out, get some goals on the board and win a game against a worthy opponent in Houston,” Bell said. “They did a really good job and it was hard for us, so I’m happy to see us come away with a positive result.”
The Frogs will get back into conference play this Thursday, Oct. 7, against the University of Oklahoma. The match is scheduled for 7 p.m. and will be televised on ESPN+.