Buffs Head West To Take On Fresno State
QUICKLY: Following its first ever back-to-back wins, the University of Colorado lacrosse team looks to have further success in its first trip to the West Coast. CU takes on Mountain Pacific Sports Federation opponent Fresno State on Saturday, March 8 in Fresno, Calif. First draw is at 1 p.m. MT.
SCOUTING THE FRESNO STATE BULLDOGS: The Bulldogs began their season with a tight 8-6 road win over Monmouth, but have lost three straight since. Their two home games so far this season were against top 20 MPSF teams, Denver and Stanford, where Fresno State has been outscored a combined 39-10. The Bulldogs average just 6.20 goals per game off of an average of 12.8 shots. They have made it to the 8-meter line just 14 times (compared to their opponent's total of 50), netting five free position goals. Entering her third year at Fresno State, head coach Jessica Pausewang has led the Bulldogs to all six of the team's win since their inaugural season of 2009. Fresno State lost five starters from last year's squad, but welcomed 12 newcomers in 2014. Senior attack Kara Concheck leads the team with eight goals and one assist. Eight other Bulldogs have scored this season, with five of them scoring at least three goals. Sophomore Anjelica Fuccillo is also a strong scoring presence, netting five goals and contributing an assist. Lead goalie Lisa Barnaba holds a 14.49 goals-against average and a .413 save percentage.
LIVE STREAM: Catch a live stream of the game on the Mountain West Network at http://www.gobulldogs.com/videos/.
LAST TIME OUT: In their inaugural season, the Buffs continue to have program firsts and break young records, and their first home game at Kittredge Field was no different. The Buffs took down the Temple Owls 15-6 on Tuesday, helping them to back-to-back wins (both at home) for the first time in program history. Though the Owls outshot the Buffs 32-29, the Buffs were more on target, with 24 of their shots going on goal. CU was also extremely successful on the draw, controlling 15 to Temple's eight, an in ground balls, scooping up 20 to Temple's 15. CU jumped out to a 4-1 lead and took a 5-2 advantage into halftime. Two 4-0 runs in the second half helped the Buffs pull away from the Owls, grabbing a nine goal lead twice.
WHERE THE BUFFALO ROAM: In their two home games this season, the Buffs have found a great home field advantage, picking up wins at both Folsom and Kittredge Fields. A combined total of 1,036 fans have cheered the Buffs to victory against Regis and Temple.
BREAKING RECORDS: Against Temple, CU broke six team records. The Buffs' attack was their strongest to date, scoring 15 goals, taking 29 shots and adding seven assists. The nine goal differential was CU's highest margin of victory, and Paige Soenksen's 18 saves were a program best. Additionally, CU had a season-low 25 fouls. The Buffs held Temple to seven total points and a single assist, both season-lows for an opponent facing CU.
GOING BACK TO CALI: Cali Castagnola also had a career performance against Temple. Just under two minutes before halftime, Castagnola had already recorded a hat trick. She led the group with a career-high six points and seven shots. Her five goals were a single-game program-best and top her previous best of four in her Colorado debut against Stetson.
THE MOORE THE MERRIER: Co-captain Marie Moore has been a great leader for the young Buffs, holding one of the team's most impressive stat lines. Moore ranks third on the team with 13 points, coming off 11 goals and two assists. She's won 20 draw controls, caused four turnovers and scooped up six ground balls. Against Temple, Moore scored three goals (two off of free position shots) and contributed two assists.
SUNNY GETTING SAVES: Lead goalie Paige "Sunny" Soenksen has spent over 284 minutes in the crease this season, posting a 10.98 goals-against average. She has grabbed 52 saves. Prior to Tuesday's game, her 34 saves ranked as the 18th best in the nation. Against Temple, Soensksen had one of the best performances of her young career, grabbing 18 saves off of the 32 shots she faced. She had twice as many saves as both of Temple's goalies combined.
THE FUSCO, THE PROUD: Johnna Fusco continues to set herself apart from the herd. Fusco leads the team with 19 points (off 11 goals and a team-high eight assists), 28 shots attempted, 14 ground balls and 22 draw controls. Fusco became the first Buff to earn MPSF player of week honors after a Rookie of the Week performance in her first two collegiate games.
LOOK OUT, IT'S LAUT: Sarah Lautman, one of two upperclassmen on the team, has been an important part of the Buffs' midfield, scooping up 11 ground balls and causing three turnovers. She scored her first goal against Regis, and then added two more to get her first hat trick in CU's inaugural home game. She kept up the pace against Temple, scoring two goals.
NEXT UP: The Buffs conclude their three-game road trip with a swing out east. First, CU takes on Massachusetts at 2 p.m. MT on Friday, March 14. Next up is New Hampshire. The Buffs face the UNH Wildcats on Sunday, March 16. First draw is at 10 a.m. MT.