September 28, 2012
ONE FOR THE DEFENSE
Franch leads Cowgirls win
STILLWATER, Okla. – Megan Marchesano recorded her Big 12-leading eighth goal of the season on a penalty kick in the 13th minute as Oklahoma State picked up its first conference win of the season Friday night with a 1-0 triumph over Iowa State at the Cowgirl Soccer Complex.
|AD Franch posted her fifth shutout of the season in Oklahoma State's 1-0 win over Iowa State
Cowgirls All-American goalkeeper AD Franch made a number of highlight-reel saves to help the 17th-ranked Cowgirls improve to 10-3-0 overall and 1-2-0 in league play.
“We came out with a win, and that’s really all you can ask,” said Franch, who finished with four saves for her fifth shutout of the season and 37th of her career. “We all eventually took care of business.”
OSU went up early after Marchesano was fouled in the area and awarded a penalty kick in the 13th minute, an opportunity that she blasted past ISU goalie Andrea Swanson for her 25th-career goal. The score moved her into a tie for sixth place on the Cowgirls’ all-time goals scored list.
Following the score, however, OSU fell into a lull, and only the play of Franch and some good luck in their corner kept the Cowgirls’ lead intact.
In the 32nd minute, Franch collected her first save of the night, diving to corral a 40-yard blast by Megan Longobardi.
Just over two minutes later, Longobardi sent a shot off the crossbar, and the Cyclone midfielder just missed the equalizer again late in the half when Franch saved another of her shots over the bar.
“If it wasn’t for AD (Franch) in the first half, we would have probably been down 3-1 and deserved to be down 3-1,” said OSU head coach Colin Carmichael. “But that’s why she’s the best keeper in the country. She stepped up, and I told the girls after the game they all owe her a big hug because without her we don’t win that game.”
Added Franch, “I just had my team’s back and played the game that I needed to play.”
The second half was another of near misses for both teams. For the Cowgirls, Allie Stephenson had a shot saved off the line by an ISU defender, Marchesano was denied on a 1 v. 1 opportunity against Swanson and had a shot hit the crossbar and Madison Mercado had a shot saved by a diving Swanson.
Meanwhile, Franch and the OSU defense held off the Cyclones’ attack. Defender Miriam Rhinehart saved a Haley Albert header off the line with just under two minutes remaining, and seconds later Franch recorded her final save of the night, once again denying Longobardi with a leaping effort.
ISU (8-5-0, 0-2-0) finished the match with a 16-9 advantage on shots and recorded six corner kicks to OSU’s five.
OSU returns to action Sunday when it hosts Bedlam-rival Oklahoma at 7 p.m.