Following a rough 2-0 loss to the Baylor Bears last Friday, Kansas soccer fell from No. 5 to No. 10 in the United Soccer Coaches Top 15 poll on Monday.
“I just don’t think we performed very well,” Kansas soccer coach Mark Francis said following the loss. “Baylor is a physical team and you have to match that and we let them push us around."
The Jayhawks will return to Rock Chalk Park to host No. 8 Oklahoma State Friday. Oklahoma State currently sits at a 3-1-1 record, good for third place in the Big 12, just in front of the Jayhawks in fourth.
Kansas has dropped three of its last four meetings with Oklahoma State, including last year's 5-2 loss in the regular season. However, the Jayhawks later beat the Cowgirls in double overtime 2-1 in the Big 12 Championship semifinals.
The all-time series currently sits at 13-10-4 in favor of Oklahoma State.
If the Jayhawks want to turn the tide and get back on a winning streak, they will need to score early. Through its first four matches, Kansas has failed to find the back of the net in the first half, one of the issues that led to the loss in Waco, Texas, last week.
Kansas has only put up 10 shots in the first half this season, with only two of those being on goal. The Jayhawks need to start creating early opportunities to score if they want a chance at the Big 12 title.
Coming off its Big 12 regular season title last year, Oklahoma State has already picked up wins over Kansas State, Iowa State and West Virginia in 2020. The Cowgirls also have tied with Baylor and lost to TCU.
The Cowgirls enter this matchup with a +4 goal differential, led by senior forward Gabriella Coleman’s three goals and nine shots on goal this season. The Kansas defense will also need to keep an eye on the midfield duo of junior Grace Yochum and sophomore Olyvia Dowell, who have put up a combined four goals and 12 shots on goal.
If Kansas can control the ball on its attacking end and limit the number of shots by Oklahoma State, the Jayhawks should be able to pick up their fourth win of the season.
Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. at Rock Chalk Park on Friday.