MacBean’s late strike leads the No. 8 Nittany Lions over No. 16 TCU
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - For the second time this week, Kaitlyn MacBean became the hero for the Nittany Lions as her late goal helped No. 8 Penn State defeat No. 16 TCU by a score of 1-0.
MacBean, who scored the game-winner against West Virginia on Thursday, made her first start for the blue and white on Sunday, and she certainly made her presence felt.
In the 77th minute, the blue and white sent in a corner kick that pinballed around and out of the box before Julia Raich sent a cross back that MacBean headed in to give the Nittany Lions the lead.
“I mean, it was crazy,” MacBean said. “They always talk about getting first contact, and that’s what I did.”
The Nittany Lions came out aggressive early and were nearly rewarded in the first minute, but the crossbar denied Mieke Schiemann’s header off the game's first corner kick.
It appeared it would not be Penn State's day as they again struck the woodwork, this time in the 48th minute. Payton Linnehan got behind the back line and managed to chip goalkeeper Lauren Kellett, but the Massachusetts native's shot hit the post and stayed out.
“There’s something you say with soccer that you need a little bit of luck, but you got to make your own luck,” head coach Erica Dambach said. “We didn’t harp on that; we didn’t get our heads down on that. We kept pushing to try and make our own luck, and eventually, it came through.”
Despite being the first-ever matchup between the two historic programs, the match was physical from the get-go, with Gracie Brian and Marli Galdamez collecting yellows in the first half.
The physicality went into another gear in the second half as neither team wanted to give an inch to the opposition, resulting in six yellow cards being awarded, three to each side.
“We haven’t really felt something like this yet,” MacBean said. “So it was definitely new, and I think it took us a second to adjust, but I think we did really well, and we have that aspect to our game. We love to play, but we get into it if we need to.”
Goalkeeper Katherine Asman was again fantastic in net for the blue and white, making five saves en route to her third clean sheet of the season.
With the win, Penn State moves to 3-0-1 on the season, while TCU falls to 1-0-2.
Next up for the Nittany Lions is another Big 12 matchup, as the blue and white will host No. 22 UCF, with kick-off scheduled for 7:30 p.m. on Thursday.
Ben Palillo is a fourth-year majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, please email email@example.com.
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