The Paw Print
The game played on Friday, October 25th in the home of the CCU “Cougars, Lakewood, CO was of significant importance for the ASU “Grizzlies.” After the 3 consecutive losses from Metro State, Regis University and CSU Pueblo, Coach Busen’s team needed 3 wins out of its last 4 games in order to secure its spot in the tournament. On the other hand CCU has been having their best season so far in the school’s history, and even though they are taking the 2nd to last (8th) place in the RMAC, the “Cougars” delivered some major upsets throughout this season. The team from Lakewood, CO beat Colorado School of Mines away after a 3:2 “thriller,” and subsequently won another 3:2 “thriller” against CSU Pueblo, so they still believed that if they keep up the good results would be able to get into the tournament.
However the game started as expected, and the “Grizzlies” took control over the ball and started slowly but surely to build their way up to CCU’s goal. Only 19 seconds into the game the sophomore forward Cody Weisenburger had a header that went a little over the crossbar, recording ASU’s first shot in the game. Unfortunately for the “Grizzlies” the first goal in the game came in the 7th minute and put them 1:0 behind. After a cross from a free kick in the middle of the field a header scored by the CCU’s junior defender Graham Delano gave the “Cougars” the lead. However, ASU showed good determination and perseverance and totally dominated the rest of the half outshooting their opponent 12 to 2. The most offensively creative players for the “Grizzlies” were Ethan Jackson, Aaron Fox, and Fabian Omana who all had great opportunities to equalize, but were stopped either by CCU’s goalkeeper Brandon Eide or by the pressure to finish. Throughout the 2nd half, the game was still in ASU players’ control, who had multiple shots and opportunities to score, and were totally dominating the possession of the ball. The “Grizzlies” outshot their opponents with 8 to 1 in the 2nd half and their hard work eventually paid off in the 85th minute when after a through ball by the sophomore defender Diego Villafranco, the junior defensive midfielder Matt Anderson chipped the CCU’s goalkeeper for the equalizer. The game went into a double overtime where the “Grizzlies” were still the more active team looking for that 2nd and winning goal. With 18 seconds left on the clock, ASU was given a penalty for a foul by the CCU’s goalkeeper Brandon Eide against the senior forward Erick Rickard. The senior defender Jake Hughes was given the tough task to deal with the pressure and score that important shot, giving his team the 3 points they deserved. Unfortunately for the “Grizzlies” Brandon Eide guessed the corner and dove a second earlier, which enabled him to stop the otherwise well placed shot by Hughes.
The game ended as a tie with which the “Cougars” were more than pleased, and even though there was a decent amount of disappointment among the “Grizzlies” for all the opportunities that they missed throughout the whole game, Coach Busen was pleased with its teams’ performance and was looking forward to meet Colorado Mesa on Sunday at home in Alamosa.