Women’s lacrosse falls to Colorado State
For the second time this season, the CU women’s club lacrosse team fell to Colorado State. However, head coach Gary Secora guarantees that the team will see the Rams again in the national semifinals, and this time it will be “for real.”
“We haven’t been as close to CSU as we are right now,” coach Secora said. “And we’re right there. It’s just going to take a little bit more hard work to get over that little speed bump. We’re focused on that, and we’ll see them again.”
No. 3 Colorado took on No. 2 Colorado State in the Rocky Mountain Showdown Saturday at Invesco Field at Mile High. While the men’s teams have been playing their showdowns at the Broncos’ stadium for years, this was the first year for the women’s showdown.
Colorado’s freshman goalie Kate Mulligan said playing at the stadium did not affect her game.
“It was surreal,” Mulligan said. “Seeing more fans than we normally have was cool, but once the game started, you couldn’t really tell. I mean, it was just another field.
The game was tied 3-3 at halftime. Coming into the second, Colorado State dominated the opening minutes, but CU’s senior attacker Kaitlin Moore came up with the score. The Rams responded with two quick goals of their own before the defense took over the game.
After a 10-minute scoring drought, CU’s junior attacker Amy Long came up with a big goal to tie the game 5-5. Eight minutes later, the showdown was headed into overtime.
Coach Secora said overtime was not a problem for the Buffs.
“We wanted to push them into overtime,” coach Secora said. “We wanted to see what we could do if we could push them into overtime.”
Two minutes into the six-minute overtime, CSU’s senior goalie Brooke Lewis threw the ball from her goal, over midfield and to junior midfielder Lisa Long. Long ran up for a quick score to put the Rams up 6-5.
Coach Secora said that goal as good as cemented the Colorado State victory.
“Against that team, (overtime) is tough. They use a slow-up offense, and it’s whoever gets the first goal is probably going to win that one,” coach Secora said. “A couple of bounces didn’t go our way on that one, they got the first goal, and they were able to basically stall the time out until the end.”
With a minute and a half left, CSU scored again to secure the 7-5 victory. Even with the loss, though, Moore said this game was a success compared to the matchup earlier this season.
“Our first game didn’t go as well as this one,” Moore said. “We came out with a lot of heart and a lot more hustle.”
After one out-of-conference game against Colorado College Friday, the Buffs will head into Women’s Division Intercollegiate Associates National Championship as a No. 3 seed. Coach Secora said the heightened intensity of the Rocky Mountain Showdown at Invesco against the No. 2 team in the country has helped prepare the Buffs for the championship.
“Playing at this level, with this kind of intensity, gets you better prepared for nationals because all games are under that kind of intensity and that kind of scrutiny,” coach Secora said. “Make one mistake and you could lose a game.”
“It’s hard to do that in practice, it’s hard to practice that. Coming out here and playing in a big-time game like this just gets you more ready to play in nationals. We’ve been playing and getting better every game, every week.”
Colorado will meet Army at 11 a.m. on May 7 in Denver. If the Buffs win their first two games, and the Rams do the same, the teams will meet in the national semifinals.
Contact Campus Press Assistant Sports Editor Margot Schneider at email@example.com.