After earning a bye for the first round of games in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation tournament, the Colorado Buffaloes women’s lacrosse team defeated the Stanford Cardinal 14-13 Friday in the semifinals.
This past Sunday, the No. 9 Buffs took on No. 7 Southern California in the championship match in Los Angeles, California. Despite four goals from senior attacker Johnna Fusco and outshooting the Trojans 28-23 in the game, the Buffaloes fell to the Trojans 16-11.
USC goaltender Gussie Johns proved to be a formidable obstacle to the Buffs in their attempts to score goals. She had 13 saves compared to Buffs’ senior goalie Paige Soenksen, who recorded five while allowing a season-high 16 goals.
After the Trojans’ Michaela Michael opened up the scoring in the game, Buffaloes junior attacker Carly Cox drew first blood for the team, notching her 26th goal of the year at the 26:46 mark.
From there, the Trojans would score seven out of the next eight goals in the game. Down 8-2 with just over seven minutes left in the first half, senior midfielder Marie Moore breathed some life into the Buffs’ offensive game with her 1oth goal of the year on an assist by junior attacker Darby Kiernan.
Fusco scored her first goal of the game less than a minute later and sophomore midfielder Miranda Stinson added another with 5:08 left before halftime, bringing the Buffs back into the game, although they still trailed 8-5 after 30 minutes of play.
The Buffaloes dug themselves a pretty big hole as the second half began, allowing five unanswered goals to the Trojans. Nearly 12 minutes had passed in the half before Cox notched the Buffaloes’ first goal of the half.
Her goal was followed by three consecutive goals by the Buffs as they fought to stay in the game. Stinson scored after Cox and added another about two minutes after Fusco scored her 49th goal of the year at the 10:32 mark.
USC went on to score two goals in the span of a minute and took a 15-9 lead with 5:51 left in the game. Fusco answered about 30 seconds later with her 50th goal of the year and senior attacker Katie Macleay notched one with 4:35 left to play.
The Trojans scored the final goal of the game with a bit under two minutes remaining and walked away with a 16-11 victory.
The Buffaloes will back in action in just under two weeks’ time. The first two rounds of the NCAA Tournament begin Friday, May 12.
Contact CU Independent Head Sports Editor Justin Guerriero at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter @TheHungry_Hippo.