Buffs Remain Perfect
BOULDER — A late first-half tally from junior Hannah Sharts proved to hold up for the Colorado soccer team as the Buffaloes remained perfect on the season, defeating Weber State 1-0 at Kittredge Field on Saturday.
CU (3-0-0) broke the ice in the 44th minute with Sharts netting her second goal of the season. The Buffs also got a strong performance from goalkeeper Dani Hansen who made six saves to complete her second shutout of the season.
"Like I told the team, at the end of the day we grinded out a 1-0 result," head coach Danny Sanchez said. "I want to give a lot of credit to Weber State. I thought they played really well and had a big chance there towards the end and Dani Hansen made a great save. We knew it was going to be that type of game. They tied Utah the other weekend and they played well. Like I told the team, we're playing at a home field [Kittredge] that's not our home field and that we haven't trained on in over three weeks. We gutted out a victory. We'll be happy about that, but I think we'll have a lot of film and we'll have a lot of work to do before we begin Pac-12 play next week."
Weber State (0-1-1) pushed the pace in the second half, getting four of its six shots on the net in the final 45 minutes. Colorado only tallied three shots on goal.
How it happened: The Buffs didn't waste any time getting the offense in the flow of the game. Freshman Shyra James took a feed from Kayleigh Webb in the fourth minute and put a shot on target from just inside the 18.
The turf at Kittredge Field made for some slight adjustments in play for the Buffs. Colorado, used to the natural surface at Prentup Field, had a few moments early in the first half where the change was noticeable.
"Both teams were playing on it," Sanchez said about the change from grass to turf. "The weather was good today and the turf was clear. It's just different. We're lucky to get Prentup [Field] and we'll be there the rest of the spring."
James got involved again later in the half, getting a great look in the 29th minute. Junior Libby Geraghty used a heel kick inside the box to leave the ball for James at the top of the six. James and Weber State goalkeeper Kaytlin Bradley both made a play at the bouncing ball it was James who tipped it just over the left corner of the net.
The Buffs were unable to get anything on net again until the 44th minute. Sofia Weiner sent in a corner kick finding Allie Palangi in the middle of a crowded box. Panagi deflected the ball over to Sharts who stepped back for a one-timer, beating Bradley on the near post.
Hansen was only called on to make two saves in the first half, but her play in the second half helped keep Weber State at bay. Colorado was outshot 5-3 in the second half, with WSU getting four shots on net in the second 45. Her biggest save of the day came in the 66th minute, stopping WSU's Lauren McConnell point-blank.
Hansen's sixth and final save came in the 83rd minute, easily dealing with a shot from Jasmine Lotey.
"Dani [Hansen] dealt with a couple of situations and made the one big save today," Sanchez added. "That [keeper] competition is going to continue. We're going to need all our goalkeepers training hard. They'll continue to work hard with Jason [Green], our associate head coach who works with the goalkeepers, and it'll be a game-by-game decision."
BY THE NUMBERS:
Up Next: The Buffs will hit the road for the first time next week. CU will head to Washington to open Pac-12 play on Friday. The team will stay in Seattle and take on the Huskies in a non-conference matchup on Sunday.
Notes: CU hasn't allowed a goal this season between Hansen and Megan Short, opening with 277 minutes of shutout play…Sharts has scored the game-winning goal in two consecutive games…CU is 3-0-0 all-time when Sharts scores…Palangi's assist marked the first point of her career…Jayden Newkirk made her first career start...the win was Coach Sanchez's 98th at Colorado…CU is now 2-1-2 all-time on artificial surfaces since 2012.