PUEBLO, Colo. -- The Colorado State University-Pueblo men’s soccer team fell 2-1 in double overtime to UCCS on Sunday. On a cold, windy day at the Rawlings Complex, the ThunderWolves did everything they needed to do to win the game but couldn’t quite lock down the result they desired. The loss drops the men’s RMAC record to 4-4 and results in a season split with UCCS in the “Steel and Silver Series.”
The ThunderWolves at first looked like they were going to pick up where they left off in their victory over Metro State on Friday. All the same elements of that victory were present in today’s game with the exception of Friday’s clinical finishing.
Dylan Cook (Jr., Albuquerque, N.M.) released Udobong Obotette (Sr., Eugene, Ore.) down the right hand channel in the 12th minute, and later Robert Kinsey (RF., Denver, Colo.) put a shot right off the UCCS keeper. Moments later, Allan Chacon (Sr., Scottsdale, Ariz.) dropped a clever back heel to Trevor Martinet (Sr., Pueblo, Colo.), who’s shot grazed the crossbar.
In the 23rd minute, Kinsey looked set to move in on goal before falling down around the penalty spot. He shielded the ball expertly, though, and put it on a plate for Cook, who smashed his shot inches wide.
The ThunderWolves had another chance to take the lead when Chacon scuffed a shot that fell perfectly to Kinsey, who then pounded the ball off the UCCS keeper for the second time.
The men finally took the lead in the 40th minute after the UCCS keeper appeared to shove a ThunderWolf player while going for the ball. Obotette buried the resulting penalty kick in the top right corner to record his 6th goal of the season.
The men looked good value for their lead at halftime, especially after Corey Cullen (So., Fort Collins, Colo.) put a ball off the post with 90 seconds remaining in the half.
The second half was a bit different at the outset, though, as UCCS came out gunning. Sam Henritze (Jr., Scottsdale, Ariz.) did well to jump in front of a shot in the 51st minute. The Mountain Lions then squirted a shot past the near post, serving to remind the ThunderWolves that their work was not yet done.
The wind, just like in the women’s game, played a part in the contest. As the north wind grew more powerful, CSU-Pueblo had trouble clearing the ball out of their own half. Still, the men managed to keep the ball low and work their way back up the field a few times, even getting in some threatening crosses.
Things really looked good for the ThunderWolves when Martinet was awarded a penalty kick in the 82nd minute. The chance to put the game away loomed large, but the midfielder missed the kick, and the team was unable to lash home the rebound.
Things got worse for the ThunderWolves when UCCS snuck in a low drive from the right wing that Chris Smith (So., Colorado Springs, Colo.) was only able to parry away. The rebound found its way back into the net, and the teams were level.
Kinsey had a chance to put the ThunderWolves back on top after the ensuing kickoff, but he put his shot just wide.
During the first period of extra time, the game assumed a chippy tone. Individual battles raged all over the pitch, with both teams struggling to find a winner against the wind and the cold. Tempers flared and yellow cards were shown.
By the second period of extra time, the teams looked set to cancel each other out. However, in the 108th minute of play, a UCCS player lined up a deep free kick and drove home the winner.
Coach Roy Stanley was understandably downcast after the game. “This is a little like the Mines game revisited,” he said. “We worked our tails off, worked smart and played hard, and certainly created enough great opportunities to win the game.”
The coach also said that although the conditions were tough, they were definitely not to blame for the loss. “It’s on everybody,” he said.
Steel and Silver Series
This season's "Steel and Silver Series" is on a new, winner-take-all points system. In each competing sport, the school that earns the most wins in head-to-head competition will be awarded four points. If the head-to-head competitions are split evenly, each school will be awarded two points.
The school with the best cumulative grade point average among student-athletes will also be awarded five points.
The school with the most points at the end of the academic year will be awarded the Ent Federal Credit Union Trophy, which will be presented in the home city of the winning school
After their season split with UCCS, the men’s soccer team will claim two points for the school.
In the three year history of the
series, UCCS has won each year.