In a battle of two ranked lacrosse teams at Kittredge Field on Tuesday, No. 15 University of Denver used a six-goal lead in the first half to get past No. 25 Colorado 9-7 and improve to 8-2 on the season.

The Buffs dropped to 5-5 overall but remain 4-1 in the Pac-12 Conference.

The Pioneers scored the first five goals of Tuesday’s nonleague game before the Buffs were able to answer with back-to-back scores from Sophie Castillo and Sadie Grozier to make it 5-2 with 16 minutes, 58 seconds to go before halftime.

However, DU then tallied three more goals to end the period to lead 8-2. Colorado outscored DU 5-1 in the second half and got within two goals with 3:51 still left on the clock, but the Buffs could not find the net for the remainder of play despite decent pressure.

“It’s disappointing for us,” head coach Ann Elliott Whidden said. “I thought we played better in the second half but that’s not good enough. We know Denver is a good team and we need to execute better offensively.

“I think defensively we adjusted, but at the end of the day we adjusted by actually executing the game plan we set out to do. We have to do that from the beginning, but we didn’t.”

Of note, Samantha Nemirov extended her program record points streak to 30 games with two points Tuesday.

Colorado will begin the second half of Pac-12 play on the road at USC.

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Denver 9, Colorado 7

At Kittredge Field

Denver (8-2)            8 1  — 9

Colorado (5-5)         2 5  — 7

Goals — Denver: Hoch-Bullen 2, Feiss 2, B. Behrins 2, Radochonski 2, E. Behrins; Colorado: Rudy 3, Grozier, Castillo, Nemirov, Mistretta.

Assists — Denver: Liddy 3, Lanuza 2, Little, E. Behrins; Colorado: Nemirov, Grozier.

Goalies (Min-Goals allowed-Saves) — Denver: Gregg (60-7-7); Colorado: Lisella (60-9-12).