Soccer team wins RMAC opener
Juan Nolasco scored his first goal of the season in the 23rd minute and the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs defense made it stand as the Mountain Lions defeated the Colorado Christian Cougars 1-0 Friday night at Sand Creek Stadium.
Jeff Korb had the ball at the top of the penalty area when Mark Brehm made a run towards the near post. The Colorado Christian defense shifted to stop Brehm, but failed to pick up Nolasco who had drifted into the penalty area from the opposite side. Korb spotted Nolasco and sent a perfect crossing pass that Nolasco one-timed into the net.
â€œI was wide open on the right corner at the 18,â€ said Nolasco, who had an assist in the Mountain Lionsâ€TM season opener against Montana State-Billings. â€œKorb was driving into (the penalty area) and saw me wide open.â€
Nolasco became the first CU-Colorado Springs soccer player since 1998 to score in the first two games of the season.
The Mountain Lionsâ€TM defense made the goal stand up. They limited the Cougars to eight shots as Brian Best, Brian Thatcher, Russell Aamodt, Matt Lay and the rest of the CU-Colorado Springs defense kept the Colorado Christian attack neutralized. Best, the last line of defense, was particularly sharp Friday night.
â€œWe played really well and kept good shape,â€ said Best. â€œIt started with everybody working real hard up top. A couple of times we got beat over the top, but we had great support all around.â€
CU-Colorado Springs goalkeeper Chris Hovasse finished with three saves while recording his second career shutout.
CU-Colorado Springs (1-1, 1-0 Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference) had numerous scoring opportunities, but was unable to capitalize. The Mountain Lions launched 22 shots, but near misses and nine saves by Colorado Christian (0-2, 0-1 RMAC) goalkeeper Andrew Kurtz held CU-Colorado Springs to the single score.
â€œWe need to get more focused in the game and get it in the net,â€ said Nolasco of the missed chances.
The Mountain Lionsâ€TM defense had two close calls. The first came in the 13th minute when Colorado Christianâ€TMs Mitchell Wingrove got a loose ball in the middle of the penalty area. Hovasse got a hand on Wingroveâ€TMs point-blank shot then smothered the rebound.
â€œThe ball went off someoneâ€TMs leg and went right to (Wingrove),â€ said Best. â€œChris made a great play to stop the shot.â€
The second came in the 61st minute. Colorado Christianâ€TMs Troy Johnson hit a line drive from 25 yards out that looked to be headed well over the goal but, thanks to some English, it dipped in mid-air. It got over Hovasseâ€TMs outstretched hand but hit the crossbar.
â€œWe had a couple of breakdowns, but every game is going to have those,â€ said Best. â€œWe were fortunate that we were able to recover tonight.â€
UCCS Players/Staff Featured
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