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Buffs Fall in Heartbreaker

Oct 10, 2021

LOS ANGELES— Colorado gave No. 3 UCLA all it had on Sunday, forcing the match to go into double overtime for the result. The Bruins got the break at the end, escaping the Buffs 2-1. 

UCLA (11-0-2, 3-0-2 Pac-12) got the game's first goal in the 28th minute and held a 1-0 lead for 73 minutes of play. Shyra James picked up the equalizer in the 74th minute and the Buffs continued to push UCLA to the end of regulation. 

Colorado (6-6-1, 1-3-1 Pac-12) totaled four shots in the two overtimes and had chances at the win from Tessa Barton and Hannah Duguid in the first overtime. Jade Babcock-Chi threatened in the second overtime before a bounce inside the box evaded Dani Hansen and led to the UCLA finisher. 

"I was really pleased with how we played in the second half," head coach Danny Sanchez explained in the postgame. "I thought we were pressing higher up the field. We were doing a better job of getting numbers forward. We scored with a great individual effort from Shanade [Hopcroft] to keep the play alive and Shyra [James] tucked in the rebound.

"The first overtime, we got a little unlucky to not get a little more out of it. We had some really legit changes. You keep a team like UCLA around long enough and they're going to punish you. The goal kind of came from nothing, which is disappointing. Now we turn our focus to Stanford next week."

The Buffs got outshot 6-0 in the first half but battled back for eight shots after the intermission. Hansen made seven saves on the afternoon, all coming in regulation.

UCLA's Lauren Brzykcy stopped four shots, making one save in each overtime. 

How it Happened
UCLA got on the board in the 28th minute when Kennedy Faulknor punched a ball up over Hansen from right in front of the net. 

The 1-0 advantage held for the Bruins until the 74th minute. Colorado's build-up paid off when Shanade Hopcroft backed down the UCLA defense. She centered the ball out to Kayleigh Webb who slotted a hard pass to James who was all alone inside the box. James turned and beat Brzykcy, giving the Buffs a late spark. 

UCLA battled back in the final five minutes, trying to finish the game in regulation. Hannah Sharts and the rest of the Colorado backline held their ground, playing physically and not allowing UCLA to get in close. 

Colorado had a chance at the winner, earning a corner opportunity in the final seconds. Hopcroft's service got cleared out of harm's way and UCLA tried to mount an offensive, but couldn't get a final shot before the end of regulation. 

Both sides countered each other early in the first overtime. Babcock-Chi served in a dangerous ball that Barton headed off a UCLA defender and over the crossbar in the 96th minute. 

Barton sparked another chance for the Buffs early in the second overtime. She streaked down the middle of the field and tried to lead Holly Hunter, but the ball was just out of reach for the CU freshman. Babcock-Chi registered CU's only shot in the second overtime, putting the ball on net in the 102nd minute. 

The Bruins built back up in the 105th minute when Madelyn Desiano rang a shot of the right post. An unfortunate bounce inside the CU box led to Marley Canales finding the open net in the 107th minute, to close out the day.

"It was disappointing to give up that goal [UCLA's first]," Sanchez added. "I thought we responded much better than we did on Thursday. We played a lot more players today and I thought the players that came in gave us a spark and gave us a chance."

Up Next
The Buffs return home for their lone match next weekend. CU will take on No. 14 Stanford next Sunday at Noon.  

James is now tied with Hopcroft for the team lead in goals (4)…The assist was Webb's second of the season, giving her four points (1 G, 2 A)…CU has dropped its last five matches to UCLA, dating back to 2016…CU now has 21 goals this season, up from 18 in 2020…CU is 0-3-0 when trailing at the half this season.