WACO, Texas -
Senior midfielder Lisa Sliwinski
broke a scoreless tie in the 87th minute with her fourth goal of the season to give the Baylor soccer team a 1-0 victory over Kansas on Friday at Betty Lou Mays Soccer Field.
"I think we were able to execute our game plan and fortunately get the great goal from Lisa," head coach Marci Jobson said. "We just played very well as a team. We didn't have a lot of all-stars out there, but it was just a really solid performance from our team."
With just under four minutes remaining in play, Sliwinski won possession of the ball near the midfield stripe and made a run down the far sideline in front of the Baylor bench. Dribbling past her defender about 25 yards from the end line, the Plano, Texas product turned towards the goal and continued her approach. After entering the 18-yard box, Sliwinski blasted a kick over the head of Kansas goalkeeper Kaitlyn Stroud from 10-yards out. It is the 24th goal of Sliwinski's career to put her fifth on the all-time Baylor scoring list.
"Lisa just drove down the far side and made a beeline for the goal," Jobson said. "She took a great shot, so I am happy for her. I think Lisa has really had a great year this year and really has worked to get into the starting position."
The goal delivered Baylor (10-1-2, 1-0-1) a win in its Big 12 home opener and moved the Bears to 6-0 at home this season. In total, BU has won eight straight matches at Betty Lou Mays Field dating back to the 2011 season. Kansas has now lost four straight to Baylor and drops to 7-3-1 on the year and 1-1-0 in Big 12 play.
Out of the gate Kansas was the more aggressive team, tallying two shots in the first five minutes of play. However, the rest of the period Baylor controlled possession as the Bears racked up 11 shots, while holding KU to one in the remaining 40 minutes of first-half play.
Baylor's best chance to score in the opening half came in the 26th-minute following a Kansas foul. Taylor Heatherly sent a free kick forward from just inside the midfield stripe and Katie Daigle's header beat Stroud, but the goal was waved off because of an offside call.
At the beginning of the second half, Kansas once again came out as the more aggressive team, but a round of substitutions for Baylor near the 61-minute mark changed the momentum of the period. The Bears collected seven shots and five corners kicks in the next 15 minutes.
However, the Baylor attack was thwarted for much of the night by the strong play of the KU goalkeeper Stroud. Despite taking 11 corner kicks in the game, Baylor was never able to get a great chance off of the set pieces, because the sophomore goalkeeper continually snared the kicks out of the air.
"We had some missed chances, but we had a lot of chances on goal and their goalie played a heck of a game," Jobson said. "She was very aggressive off her line. She was the player of the game for their team."
Before Sliwinski was able to notch the game-winner, Kansas came close to getting on the board in the 78th minute. Senior midfielder Whitney Berry beat her defender on the far side as she worked her way into the 18-yard box, but a hard charging save by Michelle Kloss kept the game scoreless.
Kloss got the win in goal for Baylor by playing the full 90 minutes and recording three saves. Dana Larsen has four shots, while Sliwinski added three to help BU outshoot Kansas, 23-7 in the game.
Baylor was whistled for two yellow cards and 11 fouls in the game, while Kansas had seven fouls in a physical battle.
"The game was very physical, but we don't really know another way," Jobson said. "I thought it was a good hard fought game by both teams."
Baylor now has nine shutouts on the year, while only allowing one goal at home. BU has reached reach 10 wins in a season for the eighth time in program history and the third time under Jobson. The all-time series record versus KU now stands at 9-6-2. In Big 12 home openers, Baylor improves to 7-7-3 and 2-2-1 under Jobson.
The Bears will not play on Sunday for the first time season and will not be back in action until Friday, Oct. 5 at Texas Tech. BU does not return home until Oct. 19 versus Texas as its next three games are on the road.