Sean Smith’s Game Winner Steals Showdown for CSU
Denver, CO – Trailing 10-6 with 6:18 remaining in the contest, the #4 Colorado State Rams staged an improbable comeback against the #9 Colorado Buffaloes, scoring four straight goals to tie the game and then winning it in the second overtime period in the annual Rocky Mountain Lacrosse Showdown at Sports Authority Field at Mile High Stadium.
The Rams only led once, and that was after sophomore attackman Sean Smith (Amherst HS / Amherst, NY) completed his hat-trick with 2:19 remaining in double overtime to give the Rams a dramatic comeback victory against their rivals from Boulder. Smith was named the Showdown’s Most Valuable Player for his effort, which included three goals and an assist.
Colorado held all the momentum after three quarters and led 8-4 heading into the final frame. The Rams continued to trail as the game wore down, despite controlling the ball for long stretches of time and outshooting the Buffaloes by a wide margin. Finally, after CU’s Riley Seidel scored an empty net goal to push the Buff lead to 10-6 with 6:18 remaining, CSU’s offense came alive to tie the game.
Sophomore attackman Kacy Carter (Rock Canyon HS / Castle Rock, CO) scored two goals in just over a minute to get the Rams within two with 4:03 to go. Then Smith connected with 2:54 remaining to make it a one-goal game. Finally, with just :38 seconds left, Carter found junior Austin Fisher (Rock Canyon HS / Highlands Ranch, CO) just after a man-up expired for the equalizer to send the game to overtime.
CSU won the face-off in both overtime periods and controlled the ball throughout. After moving the ball around the perimeter, Smith received a pass from freshman Mike Wolff (Don Bosco Prep / Ramsey, NJ), stepped around his defender and sent the ball home for the game winner.
Colorado started the game hot, scoring the first three goals of the game and leading 4-2 at the half. Even after junior face-off midfielder Dan Warfield (Smoky Hill HS / Aurora, CO) scored immediately out of the halftime break to make it a one-goal game, the Buffs continued to roll through the third quarter, outscoring CSU 4-1 over the next 14 minutes to get their 8-4 lead.
Colorado State drastically outshot Colorado by a 50-18 margin and scooped up 42 groundballs to CU’s 24. The Rams won the face-off battle 17 to 9 as well, but Colorado was opportunistic with their shooting and their zone defense kept the Rams at bay for most of the night. Warfield was outstanding when it counted most; winning 5/9 draws in the fourth quarter and both in the two overtime periods.
When the CU defense did break down, Bradley MacNee was there to turn away 13 shots. Amazingly, CSU’s goaltending duo of Jack Regan (Sunset HS / Beaverton, OR) and Koltin Fatzinger (Wheat Ridge HS / Thornton, CO) was only credited with one save between them on the evening.
Smith, Carter and Wolff each had four points on the game to lead CSU, who also got a pair of goals from Fisher. The Buffaloes were led by Riley Seidel’s three goals and two apiece from Tyler Dougherty and Riley Kulm. Both teams’ defenses gave up season highs as both teams had yet to give up double digits this year.
With the win, Colorado State (13-2 overall, 2-1 RMLC) moves into a tie with Colorado (7-6 overall, 2-1 RMLC) and BYU for first place in the RMLC. Both the Buffs and Rams have concluded regular season play and will enjoy a weekend off before the RMLC tournament in Grand Junction on May 4 and 5. Very likely, the Rams will claim the #2 seed and will face off against the Buffaloes again in two weeks depending on the outcome of BYU’s game against Utah next weekend.
Buffs Fall to Rams in Double Overtime
DENVER, Colo. – The No. 9 University of Colorado men’s lacrosse team fell 11-10 to No. 4 Colorado State University in double overtime at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on Saturday night.
Riley Seidel, Mitch Erickson, Harrison Mallen, Riley Kulm, Tyler Doughrety and Greg Kelsic all scored for the Buffaloes, while Doughrety, Jace Gan and Alex Puldy picked up the assists.
The first quarter began with the Buffs being held in neutral territory by the Rams as both teams fought for the first goal of the game. The Buffaloes struck first, when Seidel challenged the Rams goaltender and snuck the ball into the back of the net. Colorado continued to fight through the quarter as Erickson scored on a fast breakaway with nine seconds left on the clock.
The Buffaloes began the second quarter strong, scoring in the first 52 seconds when midfielder Mallen rolled the crease and put the ball in the back of the net, increasing the Buffaloes lead to 3-0. With 7:20 remaining in the quarter the Buffs gave up their first goal of the contest to the Rams, but Colorado was not ready to surrender just yet. Less than two minutes later, Kulm was found in front of the net and scored a goal for the Buffs. With 57 seconds left in the first half, the Rams were able to find the back of the cage, tightening the Buffs lead to 4-2.
The Rams began the second half hungry for a fast goal, pressuring Colorado’s defense and scoring six seconds into the third quarter. After losing possession for several minutes, the Buffaloes were able to recoup and challenge the Rams offense, regaining control of the game. With 7:45 left in the quarter Doughrety put the ball past the Rams goaltender. Thirty seconds later, the Buffs put the ball in the back of the net to push Colorado’s lead to 6-3, but the Rams were still fighting back. With 5:02 on the clock CSU was able to weave through the
Buffaloes defense and score their fourth goal of the contest. The back and forth play continued when Dougherty found the ball at the top of the crease to answer Colorado State with another goal for CU. The Buffs continued their offensive push, scoring only 15 seconds later when Gan found Seidel for another Colorado goal, ending the quarter with an 8-4 lead for the Buffs.
The Rams wasted no time in the fourth quarter finding their way through the Colorado defense and scoring their fifth goal. Only 1:56 later Puldy found Kulm in the box who drove the ball into the back of the net for the Buffaloes. The Rams continued their attempt to gain control of the game, driving a goal in with 6:50 on the clock. The Buffs attempted to cling to their momentum, when Mullen found Seidel in the box scoring on an empty CSU net, but the Rams continued their offensive assault. With 2:30 remaining in the fourth, the Rams were able to
find the back of the net three more times to bring Colorado’s lead to one. With the final seconds ticking off the clock Colorado State was able to tie the game at 10-10 and send the contest into a sudden death over time.
Both teams were able to hold strong through the first over time. However, with 2:19 remaining in the second over time, the Rams break past Colorado’s defense to complete their comeback, defeating the Buffaloes 11-10.
“We didn’t finish tonight. We had too many missed opportunities and bad coaching decisions,” said head coach John Galvin. “We’ve also had a problem with faceoffs all year, we’re pretty inconsistent. We’ll have good games and bad games, but losing faceoffs especially in overtime is hard to come back from.” Next, the Buffaloes will head to the Rocky Mountain Lacrosse Conference playoffs in Grand Junction, Colo. from May 4th-5th.
6:46 CU Riley Seidel
:09 CU Mitch Erickson
14:08 CU Harrison Mallen
7:20 CSU Austin Fisher
5:34 CU Riley Kulm, assisted by Tyler Doughrety
:57 CSU Sean Smith
14:54 CSU Dan Warfield
7:45 CU Tyler Doughrety (12th goal)
7:15CU Greg Kelsic
5:02 CSU Kacy Carter
4:48 CU Tyler Doughrety (13)
4:33 CU Riley Siedel, assisted by Jace Gan
13:00 CSU Mike Wolf, assisted by Tim Taggart
11:04 CU Riley Kulm, assisted by Alex Puldy
6:50 CSU Zack Arthur
6:18 CU Riley Kulm
5:26 CSU Kacy Carter
4:03 CSU Kacy Carter
2:54 CSU Sean Smith, assisted by Kacy Carter
:39 CSU Austin Fisher, assisted by Mike Wolff
2:19 CSU Sean Smith