CSU beats UNC, finishes undefeated in the Colorado Cup for the first time

Colorado State women's soccer held its home opener Thursday evening, hosting Northern Colorado in the third and final game of the Colorado Cup. Behind a pair of goals from Junior midfielder Caeley Lordemann and sophomore forward Ally Murphy-Paulleto, the Rams defeated the Bears 2-1 to complete its first-ever undefeated run in the Colorado Cup. 

"It was our first game at home, and I think they played a little nervous to start," head coach Bill Hempen said. "UNC hit the post twice, and in past years those may have gone in, but they didn't today. That said, we won."

Lordemann's 44th minute goal strike was the first recorded goal for any Ram this season. It came off a free kick that was created when sophomore forward Taylor Steinke was fouled just outside of the penalty area. The Greeley, Colo., native picked the top-right corner on her free kick opportunity, giving the Rams the lead and momentum heading to halftime.

Six minutes into the second half, Murphy-Pauletto extended that momentum by scoring on a Steinke's rebound to extend the Rams' lead to 2-0.

"You've got these conditions with the wind that are difficult to play soccer in, where people are battling to get the ball under control…I'm not sure anybody had it completely under control for any length of time today," Hempen said. "That was a challenge, as were all of the long throw-ins they had, which are extremely difficult to deal with. It becomes a battle of one team's will against another, and at least in that area, we were stronger. So, we'll take it."
 
The Bear's goal came in the 57th minute, when a CSU defender commited a handball in the defensive area and the Bears were awarded a free kick.  UNC's Maddie Roberts took the shot, beating Hunter Peifer to the left side to account for the Bears' tally.
 
The Bears' best remaining scoring opportunity came in the 71st minute, when a Mariel Gutierrez try that was stopped by a leaping Peifer caromed off the keeper's hands and then off of the crossbar.

PHOTO: Courtesy of CSU Athletics

The Colorado State women's soccer team bookends its weekend at home with a match against the Northern Iowa Panthers on Sunday. Kickoff is slated for 12 p.m. MT from CSU Soccer Field.