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Buffs On The Road To Face No. 7 Northwestern

Mar 6, 2015

BOULDER -The University of Colorado lacrosse team faces its first road test of the season when it travels to Evanston, Ill. to take on No. 7 Northwestern at 11 a.m. MT on Saturday, March 7.

The Buffs (2-1) have won two straight games after earning their first shutout in program history to begin the week, a 19-0 victory over Presbyterian. Saturday's contest will mark the first meeting between the Buffs and Wildcats, and a return to a familiar place for head coach Ann Elliott and her coaching staff, Colleen Magarity and Hannah Nielsen all of whom played at NU. Elliott also spent three seasons as an assistant coach for the Wildcats before being named the Buffs' first head lacrosse coach when CU added the program in the spring of 2012.

Northwestern takes the field on Saturday with a 3-2 record. In their last game, almost a week ago, the Wildcats fell in a close 12-11 match against No. 2 North Carolina on the road. Freshman attacker Selena Lasota leads NU on offense with 19 goals and two assists this season.

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QUICKLY: The University of Colorado lacrosse team (2-1) takes its first road trip of the season this weekend when they travel to Evanston, Ill. to face the seventh-ranked Northwestern Wildcats on Saturday, March 7. The Buffaloes will look to extend their winning streak to three games after defeating Presbyterian, 19-0 the last time they took the field. Saturday's contest is set for 11 a.m. MT.

INTERVIEW OPPORTUNITIES: For those members of the media wishing to interview the women's lacrosse team during the season, please contact Assistant Sports Information Director/Lacrosse Contact Ashley Braun at (303) 492-7525 or

DON'T MISS A MINUTE: A live stream is available at with a paid subscription. Free live stats can be found on

COLORADO VS. NORTHWESTERN: Saturday's game will be the first meeting between the Buffaloes and Wildcats.

SCOUTING THE WILDCATS: No. 7 Northwestern enters the game with a 3-2 overall record. The last time the Wildcats took the field, they fell in a close game (12-11) to the second-ranked North Carolina Tarheels on the road. Freshman attacker Selena Lasota leads NU on offense with 19 goals and two assists. Senior  Bridget Bianco is the goalkeeper of record in each contest and has recorded 34 saves with a .430 save percentage. The Wildcats have been tested early on, having faced three opponents ranked in the IWCLA top 10 over its first five games and hold a 1-2 record against them. Saturday's contest will be the Wildcats' home opener of the 2015 season.

LAST TIME OUT: The Buffaloes came out on fire in its game against Presbyterian on Monday, March 2, earning a 19-0 victory against the Blue Hose and recording their first shutout in program history. Colorado took a 12-0 lead into halftime and added seven more after the break.  CU's 19 goals tied a record for most scored in a single game.

PROGRAM FIRSTS: In the Buffaloes' last game against Presbyterian, it was a record setting performance for the black and gold where the Buffs posted the largest margin of victory (19), allowed the fewest number of goals (0), shots (5), assists (0) and points (0) by an opponent and tallied their first shutout in program history. The Buffs also recorded the second most points in a single-game (25) and tied a program record with 19 goals.

A HAT TRICK OF HATRICKS: Four Buffaloes recorded hat tricks in their last game against Presbyterian. Midfielder Johnna Fusco scored four goals and teammates Cali Castagnola, Darby Kiernan and Taylor Oliver each had three scores.

MAKING AN IMPACT: Freshmen Darby Kiernan, Taylor Oliver and Blair Sisk have made every minute count while on the playing field, making immediate contributions in their first season on the team. Kiernan has started all three games and is tied for second with five goals and two assists. Oliver saw her first playing time against Presbyterian and scored three goals on three shots. Sisk has started two games and is fourth on the team in scoring, tallying four goals and has five points, which is tied for third. Kiernan, Taylor and Sisk are three of the five Buffs to record at least one hat trick this season.

FIERCE FUSCO: Sophomore Johnna Fusco continues to be a force each week. She leads the Buffaloes in goals (11), points (13), shots (20), shots on goal (18) and is 6-8 on free position shots. She also is tied for second in assists (2) and is second in draw controls (7). The midfielder has recorded a hat trick in all three games to begin the season and has scored four goals each of the last two contests. She ranks second in the MPSF in goals and points per game and first in shots per game, with a 6.67 average.

NEW COMPETITION: Colorado has six first-time opponents on its schedule this year- Marquette, Presbyterian, Northwestern, Michigan, Boston College and UMass Lowell The Buffs are 2-0 thus far against them, with wins against Marquette and Presbyterian.

CAPTAINS: The Buffs turn to sophomores Sophia Gambitsky (goalkeeper), Marie Moore (midfielder) and Molly Rovzar (defender) for leadership on and off the field in 2015.

A FAMILIAR PLACE: Head coach Ann Elliott and her assistants, Colleen Magarity and Hannah Nielsen return to their old stomping grounds on Saturday, having all previously played for Northwestern. Elliott won six national championships at NU, three as a player and three as a coach. Nielsen won four while playing and Magarity won three.

MPSF COACHES' POLL: CU was picked to finish fifth in the 2015 Preseason Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Women's Lacrosse Coaches' Poll. The Buffs received 46 points.  Reigning MPSF Champion Denver took the top spot, receiving seven of the possible 10 first-place votes.

1. Denver
2. Stanford
3. USC
4. Oregon
6. San Diego State
7. California
8. UC Davis
9. Fresno State
10. St. Mary's

NEXT UP: Colorado returns home and has 10 days off to prepare for New Hampshire on March 17 at 3 p.m. MT. Colorado will look for its first win against the Wildcats after falling to them 14-11 last year.