DENVER — Colorado has won with a dominant defense this season, but the Buffs women's soccer team showed the offense can carry the load — and strike quickly.
Tatum Barton and Taylor Kornieck scored goals within 14 seconds early in the second half and Joss Orejel and Katie Joella nearly matched it with goals 1 minute, 48 seconds apart in Colorado's 6-1 win over the Denver Pioneers on Saturday night at Ciber Field.
It was a strong finish to Colorado's nonconference schedule. The Buffs (6-1-2) start Pac-12 play by hosting No. 1 ranked UCLA on Friday.
"It's 11 Pac-12 games and this is where it amps up," head coach Danny Sanchez said.
Barton finished with two goals to double her season total and helped Sanchez picked up his 100th career win at the Division I level. He has won 64 games since taking over the Buffs in 2011, and 331 in his 22-year career. He had 36 wins at Wyoming before being hired by Colorado.
"Any coach will say when you're at the University of Colorado competing for and winning championships is the expectation," Sanchez said. "If you coach long enough you're going to get some wins."
The win wrapped up the Colorado Cup for both teams. The Buffs were 2-0-1 in the series, finishing second to Northern Colorado. Winning the Cup would have been nice, but the Buffs can be satisfied with the way they continue to dominate on defense. They allowed a goal for just the second game this season, but it was cosmetic for Denver in the face of Colorado's offense that came in bunches.
"We came out strong, with a lot of confidence," Barton said. "In the locker room (at halftime) we were talking about needing to come out strong and get another goal."
The talk paid off. Barton, who scored 1 minute, 29 seconds into the game, made it 2-0 at the 46:23 mark. Kornieck caught the Pioneers flat-footed on the ensuing kick and beat goalkeeper Ali Tobey with a high shot to the right corner at 46:37.
"It was a great individual effort from Taylor," Sanchez said. "That was the key moment of the game. When it's 2-0 it's still a game. To get that third goal kind of took the pressure off of us."
Denver (3-4-1) spoiled the shutout when Hannah Adler scored at 51:39, but Colorado struck again — and fast. Orejel, who had two assists, scored her first goal of the season at 59:31 and Joella also got her first at 61:19.
Camilla Shymka finished the scoring with her first goal of the season at 83:12.
The six goals matched Colorado's season high, first reached Aug. 27 against UC Riverside.
Colorado 6, Denver 1Colorado (6-1-2) 1 5 — 6
Denver (3-4-1) 0 1 — 1
Goals (assists) —Colorado: Tatum Barton (Megan Massey) 2nd minute, Barton (Cassie Phillips, Joss Orejel) 47 minute, Taylor Kornieck 47th minute, Orejel 60th minute, Katie Joella (Massey, Orejel), 62nd minute, Camilla Shymka (Jordan Goodwin, Becca Rasmussen), 84th minute; Denver: Hannah Adler 52nd minute
Goalies (Min-Goals allowed-Saves) — Colorado: Jalen Tompkins (45-0-0), Scout Watson (45-1-2); Denver: Ali Tobey: (90-6-2).