Buffs and Wildcats Play to Draw
BOULDER—Colorado and Arizona each had chances to put the ball in the back of the net on Friday, but both sides came up empty in the scoreless draw.
Sophomore Dani Hansen made 11 saves, including two from just off the goal line in the second overtime to preserve her sixth shutout of the season. Arizona's Hope Hissy was equal to the task in net for the Wildcats, making seven saves.
Colorado (7-5-2, 3-4-2 Pac-12) put 21 shots towards net, but only tallied one chance in the two overtime periods. Arizona (8-4-1, 3-4-1 Pac-12) outshot CU 23-21, totaling 15 shots in the second half and overtime periods.
"I thought we created a lot more opportunities today than we probably did our last two or three games combined," head coach Danny Sanchez noted. "We'll take the positives from that. I thought we did a really good job of dealing with Arizona's dangerous attacking players and minimizing the number of chances for them."
The draw gives the Buffs 11 points in the conference, with two regulars season games left to play.
HOW IT HAPPENED: The Buffs' offense got called on early, earning a free-kick from just off the penalty box in the 7th minute. Shanade Hopcroft stepped to the kick and put it into the Arizona wall for CU's first good chance of the day. Minutes later Kayleigh Webb hit a long shot that drifted wide of the net.
Colorado's best chance of the first half came in the 25th minute, off the foot of Lawson Willis. She severed up Hannah Sharts off one of CU's six corner opportunities. Sharts headed the ball but it was deflected high over the Arizona net.
CU continued to push and in the 35th minute got two looks from Roo Yarnell-Williams and Hopcroft. Yarnell-Williams shot was saved by Hisey, but the Buffs scrambled and got another chance from Hopcroft that was blocked before getting on net.
Sharts registered another scoring chance in the early minutes of the second half. This time it was Hopcroft who served the ball into Shyra James in the 47th minute. James headed the ball to Sharts who put a one-touch volley over the open net.
CU's offense was kept at bay until the 59th minute when a scramble inside the goal box resulted in CU's two best chances of the match. Sharts got the madness in front started with a header that pinballed around the Arizona defense. A Wildcat defender put the ball of the Arizona crossbar and Jayden Newkirk got the rebound with her chest, but couldn't get the ball across the line.
"We had a couple good opportunities to win the game," Sanchez added. "It's just small margins. Unfortunately, the ball just didn't go in for us today."
CU's Kyla Ferry had two chances inside the final 10 minutes, just missing a diving header and then connecting on a header that was punched over the net by Hissy in the 85 minute.
The Buffs' only shot on net in the overtime period came in the 104th minute. Jesse Loren stretched out to tip the ball on net but was directly into the hand of Hissy.
Hansen earned her shutout in the 108th minute, making two back-to-back saves. The first came on a diving stop on Jada Talley. The rebound was then contested by UA's Jill Aguilera and Newkirk, giving Hansen time to scramble back into position to make a second stop on Madison Goerlinger.
"We changed things up a little in overtime to try and get our dangerous players on the ball," Sanchez explained. "I think there's that extra moment of composure. That extra moment of quality just wasn't quite there today. We have to look at it from a bigger lens and that is that we did create more opportunities."
BY THE NUMBERS
UP NEXT: Colorado will host No. 17 Arizona State at 1 p.m. MT on Sunday.
NOTES: CU now has a seven-match unbeaten streak against Arizona, dating back to 2014 (3-0-4)…Hansen now has 82 saves on the season and a .882 save percentage…Webb and Sharts each had five shots on the day…Sharts picked up a yellow card in the 52nd minute.