By Hayden Cogswell
The Colorado College women’s soccer team celebrated senior night against Colorado State University Friday Oct. 4, playing under the newly installed lights of Stewart Field.
A tight affair overall, the Tigers broke through in the 27th minute when forward Jacqui Hand ’22 finished off a flowing move. Forward Catie McDonald ’20 got things going when she played forward Kiley Suter ’22 through on the right side of the 18-yard box, and it was her whipped-in cross that was finished off by Hand on the far side.
The Tigers remained defensively ignited for the remainder of the match to preserve a clean sheet and get a crucial 1–0 win in pursuit of their goal of a Mountain West championship.
“This team is a family, and that’s how we performed this weekend,” midfielder Coley Lyubenko ’21 said.
“Jaqui scored a beautiful goal, Abby [Opperman ’23] had some tremendous saves for us, and our back line have been absolutely solid this season and Friday was no exception.”
Opperman stopped all seven of the Ram’s shots on target on Friday, including a spectacular stop on a penalty kick in the 74th minute.
The Tigers had extra motivation for putting up such a convincing win, as their six seniors were honored post-game.
“It was evident on Friday night just how much this senior class means to all of us,” Lyubenko said. “They have been a major role in making this program as strong as it has been this fall, and they are excellent leaders, teammates, and just people.”
Sunday brought a tough challenge for the team as they took on the University of Wyoming Cowgirls, a team that they have not beaten in years.
“Wyoming has always been a tough team for us,” forward Lucia Costanza ’20 said. “We haven’t beaten them in my four years and we really wanted a result against them.”
Unfortunately, CC’s tough luck against Wyoming continued, but the game proved to be a thrilling match. The Tigers got the scoring going in the fourth minute when forward Abby Hubbard ’22 curled in a beautiful effort from the top left corner of the 18-yard box. Wyoming clawed a goal back before a cross from midfielder Jenna Wilt ’21 was finished off by defender Toni Tsamasfyros ’22 several yards out.
Just a few minutes later, however, the Cowgirls equalized to tie the game at 2–2. The Tigers continued to push, searching for a decisive winner, when a cross into their box hit the hand of Hand with 40 seconds remaining. Wyoming converted the resulting penalty kick to complete a heartbreaking 3–2 loss for CC in the dying moments of the game.
Despite the tough loss, the team remains optimistic about the rest of the season.
“We’ve been having such a good team culture this year, everyone gets along super well, and we push each other while giving each other support a lot,” Costanza said. “We’ve created an atmosphere where everyone is super competitive and it’s really fun to be a part of. Everyone is still in it together and we are looking to sweep a weekend away, that would be huge for us.”
The women travel to Nevada this weekend to face Mountain West opponents University of Nevada and UNLV.