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Buffs Host Rams to Start the Season

Aug 18, 2021

BOULDER – The 2021 soccer season officially kicks off with the Colorado State Rams visiting Prentup Field on Thursday (4 p.m.). The match will be the second leg of the Colorado Cup for both schools. 

Colorado got its first three points of the season in the Buffs' 2-0 win at Air Force last Saturday. The win doesn't count towards the season but does in the Colorado Cup standings. The Buffs sit second in the standings, behind Denver who beat Colorado College 3-1 last weekend, earning a slight edge in goal differential. 

The Buffs have not dropped a contest to the rival Rams. The two teams haven't met often, with Thursday marking just the sixth all-time meeting. The Buffs hold a 2-0-3 advantage in the series, with the last result being a 0-0 draw in 2018. 

"I think Colorado State would be classified as a rival in pretty much everything" head coach Danny Sanchez commented. "We typically played CSU the first or second game of the season and it's always been a battle. We know that they'll bring a lot of fans in force. They've had some exhibitions under their belt with Northern Colorado and Texas Tech. 

"They have a new coaching staff," Sanchez continued. "I think whenever you bring in a new staff you have a new energy and a new way of looking at things and people buy-in right off the bat. We're expecting what we always from Colorado State. An absolute battle."

Sophomore Rachel Rosen and senior Shanade Hopcroft picked up CU's two goals at Air Force. All available players got in the contest for the Buffs, helping get CU's six first-year freshmen college playing experience before the regular season. 

"We got a lot of people in and played an extra 20 minutes in the end just to get more players some time," Sanchez explained. "We were able to give everybody a lot of playing time for an opportunity to showcase themselves."

Thursday's game will be carried by the Pac-12 Network. Thad Anderson will be on the call. 

 CU will close out its Colorado Cup play on Sunday against Colorado College (noon) at Denver.