The Rams suffered their first defeat of the season Friday, falling 2-1 on the road against Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Arizona.
Colorado State (1-1-1) entered the contest undefeated but faced a tough GCU (2-0) squad. The Lopes were all over the Rams from kickoff, outshooting CSU 12-1 in the first half.
Despite the lopsided shot differential, the half ended scoreless.
Heading into the second half the Rams needed to add some intensity but the Lopes came out even stronger than the first. Milla Benedetti struck first for GCU on a shot that snuck just underneath CSU goalkeeper Jesse McGinley in the 53rd minute. Down 1-0, this was the first time CSU has trailed all season.
GCU then got some breathing room in the 57th minute, thanks again to Benedetti. The sophomore was taken down in the box, earning a penalty kick. She found the bottom left corner of the net to put GCU up 2-0.
CSU did its best to stay in the contest by maintaining possession and generating some solid chances.
Freshman forward Kaija Ornes would finally crack the scoreboard for the Rams, rocketing a shot into the top left corner in the 84th minute to cut into GCU’s lead.
The comeback would fall short for the Rams though as the Lopes held on to win 2-1.
CSU will be back in action Friday in Moraga, California when they play UC Irvine on the road.
Collegian Soccer Reporter Chad Deutschman can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org and on Twitter @ChadDeutschman.