The last time CSU played CU at Invesco Field at Mile High, the Rams beat the Buffaloes 14-10. That was football; this weekend it will be lacrosse.
On Saturday, CSU men’s lacrosse will face off against in state rival, CU in the fourth annual Rocky Mountain Lacrosse Showdown.
Last year, CSU (11-2) topped the Buffs 9-6. CSU hasn’t lost to CU since the Showdown began and according to Senior Danny Stevens, this year isn’t the year to change that.
“[Playing CU] means a whole lot,” Stevens said. “We haven’t lost to them in the regular season, losing to CU leaves a bad taste in your mouth.”
CSU didn’t get off to the best start this season, losing their opening game to Oregon, 17-7, who CU later beat 6-5. But the Rams have bounced back to rise to the no. 2 team in the nation, according to Men’s Collegiate Lacrosse Association, the governing body of club lacrosse in America. CU is currently no. 6.
CU has had a good season as well, beating Division III Colorado College and losing 14-10 against BYU, currently the no. 1 team in the nation.
The Rams have had a tough week of practice and have almost two weeks to prepare for this grudge match. Stevens said the offense is getting on track and the defense is starting to click again.
One of the big factors in the game will be goalie Tyson Ehinger. The junior started his career as a Ram but left for Boulder when he realized he wasn’t going to win the starting spot from then junior goalie, Pete Jokisch. Ehinger played and started in the Showdown last year.
Ehinger has since returned to CSU and is downplaying the hype surrounding the game.
“It’s just a game,” said Ehinger. “I don’t get caught up in the hype, I have teammates to care of.”
Ehinger says he still keeps in contact with a few people from the team and they have been really supportive of him because they understand the situation. But he won’t be surprised if something happens.
Before he left practice, Stevens said he is excited for the game because the atmosphere is so different.
“The fans are loud and it is hard to hear, nothing like playing at Invesco.”
Lacrosse beat writer Grant Meech can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org