In the most lopsided game of its short three-year history, the University of Colorado lacrosse team stomped its way to an easy victory over visiting Saint Mary's on Friday, 23-0, and set a couple of records along the way.
"It's not about records for us," CU head coach Ann Elliott said. "It's about improving on our last game against San Diego State. I think we did that in a lot of ways today. I think we had kids step up today when they got a chance, and that's the exciting part for us."
First, the Buffaloes broke the record for most goals in a game, with the previous record at 21 goals, which they also set against St. Mary's a year ago. The score of that game was 21-5. Naturally, by shutting out their opponent and setting a school record for goals in a game, they also obliterated the margin-of-victory record.
Junior midfielder Tori Link came off the bench for the Buffaloes in the biggest game of her career as she netted five goals. Before Friday's matchup at Kittredge Field, Link had only scored one goal all season, and no Colorado player had scored five in a game since last season. It was the seventh time the feat had been achieved in program history.
"It's such a good feeling to come off the bench from a few games and to score a quick five goals is pretty awesome," Link said. "This is a huge boost into the end of our season. We're going to be set up pretty well for (the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation tournament)."
Sophomore attacker Taylor Oliver also added the second hat trick of her career and first of the season. Twelve players in all scored for the Buffaloes.
It was the CU's first shutout since March 2 last year, when it defeated Presbyterian 19-0.
With the victory, Colorado improves to 10-4 overall and 5-2 in conference play; St. Mary's falls to 0-11 overall and 0-6 in MPSF play.
After Colorado's strong performance in its 9-8 loss to then-No. 7 USC last weekend, the Buffs started to get some notice in the Inside Lacrosse Poll this week. Although the rankings only go as high as 20, the Buffaloes received enough votes to, more or less, place them at No. 21 in the country.
From the start of the game, the Gaels couldn't keep up with the Buffaloes. Colorado scored early and often and didn't relieve any pressure on the defensive end either. Towardsthe end of the game, the officials let the clock keep running during every penalty and stoppage of play, indicating that the deficit was too large to prolong the time of play.
By halftime, the Buffs led 14-0.
During the second half, the Buffs took the gas off the pedal a bit, but by that point it didn't matter much. They finished out the game with nine more goals and an eventual score of 23-0.
Colorado returns home on Sunday to battle the California Golden Bears at noon for senior day. The program has yet to defeat Cal, with a current series record of 0-2.
"We're still a couple games away from the tournament, so I think every game for us says we're getting better, gives us more confidence, but we've got a big game on Sunday," Elliott said.
CU 23, St. Mary's 0St. Mary's (0-11, 0-6 MPSF) 0 0 — 0 Colorado (10-4, 5-2 MPSF) 14 9 — 23
Goals — CU:Link 5, Oliver 3, Macleay 2, Cox 2, Nemirov 2, Castillo 2, DeWinter 2, Stinson, Moore, Kiernan, Lautman, Sarcona.
Assists — CULMacleay 2, Cox, McCain, Moore, Nemirov, Perry, Rovzar, Stinson.
Goalies (Min-Goals allowed-Saves) — CU: oenksen (30:00-0-3), Lisella (30:00-0-1). ; St. Mary'sPinello (60:00-23-10)..
Alissa Noe: email@example.com