K-State soccer falls to Oklahoma State after two late-half scores

Forward Sophie Harlan races towards the ball against Memphis. The Wildcats fell to the Tigers 0-1 on Sept. 7 at Buser Family Park. (Haylee Haslett | Collegian Media Group)

Kansas State soccer fell to 2-6-3 after a late first-half score from midfielder Xcaret Pineda.

The first half showed both teams exchanging shots, moving the ball effectively into opponent territory. Oklahoma State’s offense took advantage of possession throughout the day, keeping the ball for the majority of the first half.

Each team battled with a close shot margin in the half. Play momentarily stopped due to a lightning delay, with sporadic rain temporarily falling on the pitch.

Out of the delay, K-State began building offensive momentum. With under 10 minutes in the half, the Wildcats advanced downfield undeterred. Midfielder/forward Sophie Harlan would draw defenders, passing the ball to forward Rilyn Rintoul for a strike on goal. Unfortunately for K-State, goalkeeper Grace Gordon deflected the shot for the Cowgirls.

With six minutes remaining in the first half, the Cowgirls drove deep into K-State territory. Pineda split defenders, keeping the ball in the middle of the field with a long kick to the right post, banking the ball into the net for the first score 1-0.

Out of the half, the Wildcats began knocking near the Cowgirls goal with another close strike to try and tie it up.

The Wildcats were presented with similar problems in the second half, continuing to battle for possession as time fizzled away.

In the 82nd minute of play, the Cowgirls solidified its win with an insurance score from forward Logan Heausler. K-State was unable to mount a comeback down two.

With the loss, K-State falls to 11th in Big 12 standings. Offensively, only one other team has similarly struggled in the conference — Cincinnati. The Bearcats and the Wildcats rank last in the division in terms of goals.

Defensively, the Wildcats have wavered from its usual presence, averaging the seventh most goals allowed per game in the league.

The Wildcats continue its road stretch with a matchup against TCU at 7 p.m. on Thursday in Fort Worth, Texas.