The No. 20 Colorado women’s soccer team suffered its third straight loss on Sunday, falling to No. 8 UCLA, 2-1, at Pebntup Field.
The Buffaloes’ losses have come in a stretch of the season that drew No. 1 Stanford, No. 2 USC and the Bruins.
CU now sits at 13-3-3 on the season and 5-3-2 in the Pac-12 Conference. UCLA moves to 13-3-1 overall and 8-2 in conference play.
“I thought we played well,” Colorado coach Danny Sanchez said in a school news release. “We know teams on Sunday at altitude are going to fade a little bit. You can see UCLA’s quality. I thought we really neutralized their dangerous players, (but) I was disappointed with the two goals we gave up.
“We got a nice finish from Taylor (Kornieck) to even it up. But we did not do enough in the final third.”
The Bruins controlled the ball early on, forcing CU to set up in its defensive zone for the early portion of the opening half. Buffs goalkeeper Jalen Tompkins registered two saves in the first 13 minutes, as Colorado looked to gain possession.
CU’s first scoring opportunity came in the 14th minute. Emily Groark and Jorian Baucom combined on a give-and-go that resulted in Groark pushing the ball wide of the far post.
UCLA found the back of the net in the 20th minute, silencing the crowd of 1,683. A CU foul led to a set piece for the Bruins at the 19:50 mark. Ashley Sanchez hit the kick into traffic inside the goal box. The ball bounced off the foot of Olivia Athens and to Chloe Castaneda who just put it past Tompkins.
The Buffs began to mount an offensive attack in the second half. Kornieck had two great looks in the 63rd and 64th minute. Her first shot beat the diving goalkeeper but caught the right post. Kornieck followed up with a free kick just off the 20 that was hit high over the net.
Colorado’s offensive push hit paydirt in the 69th minute. Kelsey Aaknes sent a long ball down the sideline to a running Chaynee Kingsbury. The freshman played the ball from the corner to the back post, finding Kornieck in stride. Kornieck met the ball just off the goal line and tapped it in, evening the score at 1-1.
UCLA again quieted the crowd in the 78th minute. A costly CU turnover at the top of the box led to Sanchez breaking the tie.
Colorado had a late chance to tie the game in the 89th minute. Kingsbury put the ball in with a long flip-throw from just off the corner flag. The ball bounced around the box and Kayleigh Webb fired a shot that hit a player in front of the net.
Colorado outshot UCLA 15-14.
Colorado closes out the regular season at home against Utah on Friday.