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Joss Orejel from CU soccer named Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week

Senior defender Joss Orejel was named the Pac-12 Conference Defensive Player of the Week.
Cliff Grassmick / Staff Photographer
Senior defender Joss Orejel was named the Pac-12 Conference Defensive Player of the Week.


After starting the season with a dominant scoreless streak, it should come as no surprise a Colorado Buffaloes women’s soccer defender has been honored with the Pac-12 Conference Defensive Player of the Week.

On Tuesday, senior Joss Orejel was given that award by the league for her integral part in the Buffs’ two victories shutout last weekend, a 1-0 win against TCU and a 6-0 rout of UC-Riverside. It is the first Pac-12 weekly honor for the senior from Tustin, Calif.

Orejel recorded an assist in each game, using a crossing pass to find Taylor Kornieck for a header that provided all the offense against TCU. Orejel also provided the assist on the first of three Marty Puketapu goals in Sunday’s trouncing of UC-Riverside. The two assists increased Orejel’s career total to 11, making her one of four players tied for ninth-place on CU’s all-time assists list.

Despite missing the season opener in order to attend her grandfather’s funeral, Orejel has played a key role in CU posting four consecutive shutouts to start the season. The Buffs have pushed their season-opening scoreless streak to 391 minutes, 13 seconds. Dating back to the end of last year, that scoreless streak checks in at 407:58. CU didn’t give up a shot on goal against TCU and allowed only two against UC-Riverside.

The Buffs’ hot start also garnered recognition in this week’s national polls, with CU coming in at No. 21 in the United Soccer Coaches poll. The Buffs are ranked No. 16 by Top Drawer Soccer and No. 18 by Soccer America. 

Orejel and the Buffs (3-0-1) will attempt to keep their unbeaten and unscored-upon start intact this week in home matches against Cal State-Northridge (Saturday, 1 p.m.) and Brigham Young (Monday, 1 p.m.).

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