Men’s soccer buffalos Colorado

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    By BRUCE JACOBS

    You win some, you tie some. And sometimes, you do both.

    Men’s soccer cruised to a 4-0 victory over the Colorado Buffaloes Friday night but barely escaped with a 2-2 tie Saturday in Ogden against the Weber State Wildcats.

    Not even legendary coach Phil Jackson of the Chicago Bulls could help the struggling Buffaloes on Friday at South Field. Jackson was on hand to cheer for his son Ben, who plays for the Colorado soccer team.

    Before the game began, BYU assistant coach Mike Bodon told the Cougars to concentrate on their defensive play.

    “I’ll tell you a secret. If you play defense, the rest will take care of itself,” Bodon said.

    The players must have taken his advice to heart.

    The Cougars used a stifling defense to create a fast transition attack that seemed to leave the Buffaloes frustrated and confused most of the night.

    A bad decision by Colorado’s goalkeeper led to BYU’s first score. Instead of controlling a ball passed to him by a defender, the Buffalo goalie kicked it back into play.

    Freshman forward Brandon LeRoy intercepted the ball, and then slotted it through the Buffalo defense to freshman midfielder Chad Deshler. Deshler quickly introduced the ball to the back of Colorado’s net to put BYU up 1-0.

    Colorado managed to keep BYU from scoring the rest of the first half, but the Cougar offense exploded in the second.

    With 43:36 left in the game, Deshler got the ball deep in Buffalo territory. When the defense converged on him, Deshler crossed it to open junior forward Ryan Hawkins. Hawkins then delivered a perfect pass to freshman midfielder Matt Walker, who wasted no time making it 2-0.

    “Hawkins laid it out for me perfect, and it was just a wide open net after that,” Walker said.

    Hawkins and senior defender Abe Millet each added another goal before the end of the game to seal the Cougar victory.

    Saturday’s game vs. Weber State was a different story. After a day of steady rain, the Weber State field was better suited for mud wrestling than soccer.

    “It took us a few minutes to get used to the conditions and the field,” said sophomore defender Nate Smith.

    Fifteen minutes into the game, LeRoy beat two Wildcat defenders and then divided the rest of the defense with a pass to sophomore forward Nate Lowe. Lowe’s shot put the Cougars up 1-0.

    With 20 minutes left to play, Weber State tied the game by heading in a long free kick. Then, with 10 minutes to go, the Wildcats took the lead on a similar play. This time the Cougars prevented the header, but Weber State still managed to score when the ball wound up before a Wildcat standing in front of the Cougar net.

    With a minute left, a long Cougar throw-in made it to senior defender Nate Morris in the middle. Morris headed the ball over a Wildcat defender to freshman defender Chad Oyler, who volleyed it into the net to tie the game.

    The game went to overtime, but neither team could score again.

    Junior midfielder Arthur VanWagonon said the Cougars are looking forward to playing Weber State again Oct. 23 at South Field.

    “Everyone was disappointed we didn’t win,” Van Wagonon said. “We let them back in the game. There’s a wider width down at South Field in Provo where we can get back at them.”

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