USLIA No. 6 Brigham Young University (BYU) mounted a tremendous fourth quarter comeback to upset No. 1 CSU men’s lacrosse team 11-8, Friday, at Peter Barton Stadium on the University of Denver campus.
BYU scored six unanswered goals at the end of the game to give CSU (11-3, 2-1 RMLC) their first conference loss of the season.
Assistant coach Alex Smith said BYU seemed to have more heart near the end of the game.
“I have to give credit to BYU, they seemed like they wanted it more than we did,” Smith said.
The first quarter was a defensive struggle. At the end of the quarter it was 2-1 in favor of the Rams. The second quarter would see more offensive life as the two teams traded goals, leading to a 5-4 BYU lead at halftime.
But the Cougar lead wouldn’t last long after junior midfielder Brian Stone found the back of the BYU net 17 seconds into the third quarter, tying the game at 5-5. The offense finally found some holes in the tough BYU defense as the Rams scored three more goals before the end of the quarter, making it 8-5. The CSU defense played strong in the third, shutting down the Cougar offense.
Sophomores Tyler Treece and Campbell Diebolt scored twice against BYU and four other players scored at least one goal for the Rams.
If the third quarter belonged to CSU, the fourth quarter would belong to BYU. Ten seconds into the fourth, BYU scored one of its six fourth quarter goals right off the faceoff. CSU watched its lead diminish as BYU continued to score.
“The defense played well in six on six situations,” Smith said. “BYU pushed the transition game but when we settled down, we played OK.”
BYU goalie Glenn Makechnie recorded 15 saves and CSU goalie Pete Jokisch recorded nine saves, but it wasn’t enough for the Rams.
With just over two minutes left in the fourth quarter, BYU scored its final goal of the game, putting a cap on the conference win for the Cougars. As the final horn sounded the Cougars rushed the field and celebrated as the Rams walked off the field dejected.
“It’s a dog fight when you match up (with) rival teams,” Smith said “Strategy goes out the window.”
Saturday, CSU will have another grudge match on their hands as they head back to Denver to do battle against No. 8 Colorado in the third annual Rocky Mountain Showdown at Invesco Field at Mile High.