West Virginia junior midfielder/defender Juliana Lynch grapples with a Duquesne player on Aug. 29, 2021.

West Virginia junior midfielder/defender Juliana Lynch grapples with a Duquesne player on Aug. 29, 2021. 

The No. 21 West Virginia women’s soccer team returns home to Dick Dlesk Soccer Stadium to host the 2020 Big 12 Champions, the No. 11 TCU Horned Frogs, on Thursday in Morgantown. 

“Obviously being back home with these two opponents is a huge, huge opportunity and two huge games for us to get some points,” head coach Nikki-Izzo Brown said. “We know obviously TCU is the reigning Big 12 Champion, so we have our hands full Thursday, so excited to bring in the Horned Frogs.”

West Virginia (8-3-2, Big 12 2-1-1) suffered a devastating loss on Sunday falling in double overtime against Kansas, 2-1. Senior forward Lauren Segalla got on the board first for the Mountaineers, with an assist by sophomore midfielder Lilly McCarthy. 

Kansas was able to quickly answer with its own goal around the 13-minute mark. The rest of the matchup was filled with multiple yellow cards for both teams and many substitutions to try to gain the lead. Around the 109-minute mark Kansas was able to find the back of the net finishing the game, 2-1. 

“In conference play, you can’t take your foot off the pedal and unfortunately there are a lot of mental errors that ended up costing us points and a loss,” Izzo-Brown said. “You know you look at every stat and the one that only matters is the final score, but it’s again not like we’re not creating and it’s not like we’re not doing some good things. at the end of the day the only stat that matters is wins.”

TCU (11-2-1, Big 12 3-1-1) is the  reigning Big 12 Champion and it is coming off a 3-0 win against Oklahoma State on Sunday. 

The Horned Frogs dominated possession the entire match. Junior midfielder Gracie Brian got the first goal and it was assisted by junior forward Grace Collins. This is Brain’s fifth goal and her second game-winning goal of the season. 

Senior forward Messiah Bright for TCU earned the second goal of the night, marking her seventh on the year. With the goal Bright moved into sole possession of third all-time with 70 points in TCU history. 

Collins earned the third and final goal of the match, getting her rebound from a penalty kick to shutout Oklahoma State. Collins’ goal was her eighth of the season and is now 10th all-time in career goals. With the assist on Brian’s goal Collins now totals seven on the season and is now tied for fourth all-time.

It was recently announced by the league that TCU senior defender Brandi Peterson was named Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week, her third of the season and sixth of her career.

In net the Horned Frogs rely on sophomore Lauren Kellett who has only allowed seven goals to get past her the entire season and with the win posted her sixth shutout on the season. 

“They’re good, it’s going to be a heck of a soccer match on Thursday,” Izzo-Brown said. “They have it all, they’re not lacking in any department that’s for sure, so we will have our hands full. It’s going to be a great match so it’s going to be exciting.” 

Kickoff is set at 7 p.m. at Dick Dlesk Soccer Stadium. The match will be streamed on ESPN+.