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Colorado took to Prentup Field Saturday to challenge a group of soccer alumni. The game ended in a 2-2 tie after three 30 minute periods.

CU looked strong in the first period, with shots on goal coming from freshman Maddie Krauser and seniors Shaye Marshall and Amy Barczuk. Current CU keeper Kayla Millar, who was in the net for the alumni, had three saves in the first period.

Most of the CU freshman got their first taste of play in the alumni game, including a handful in the second period. In the final two minutes before the break, freshman Carly Manso scored off an assist from Barczuk for the game's first goal.

Sophomore Carly Boylard was denied in her first shot attempt in the final period, but netted one with the assistance of Marshall and sophomore Darcy Jerman. The Buff alumni surged in the closing minutes of the match. With just under 15 minutes remaining, Kim Lowry (2007-10) found the goal. Nikki Marshall (2006-09) and Orly Ripmaster (2003) were credited with the assist. In the final seconds of the match, the elder Marshall tied the game 2-2.

Media Day Quotes:
Colorado Head Coach Danny Sanchez:

On the season:
“It was good to get out and run around a little bit today (at the alumni game). We’re excited about next Friday to start defending the Colorado Cup at UNC at 7:30 on Friday. Then down to Colorado College on Sunday. Players have been working hard. All the coaches will say that they actually have been working really hard preseason. We’re excited to get going with the season.”

On his first season at Colorado:
“Well first of all, the whole staff was here by Christmas. We were able to hit the ground running last spring, and that really helped. We have 12 freshmen out of our 27 players, so I think that’s probably the biggest acclamation where the best players can step in and help us. I don’t really see any big challenges because I’m pretty familiar with the program, very familiar with the players. We just need to identify some players that can compete in the Pac-12. During preseason and through this non-conference piece, that’s going to be our goal. Shooting towards Oregon, our first conference game, that’s really going to be our focus, is hooking up and being successful in the Pac-12.”

“When I was at Metro State, I think it was time for me to have a new challenge. Wyoming was a challenge for us, but as a staff and as a program, we got it moving in the right direction. I think this is it. This is where I want to coach at the highest level, and Pac-12 is the highest level. I want to coach at a place where we can win at the highest level, and you can do that at Colorado. Also, I want to raise my family in a community where I want them to grow up and where I want to live as well. Moving two hours, two hours and two hours, I’m very fortunate in the college world. I’m hoping for us to move the program forward. It wasn’t so much a new challenge; it was just too good of an opportunity to pass up.”

On the difficulty of the Pac-12:
“I’m sure it’s a common thing amongst all programs here at CU. Specifically about women’s soccer, it’s brutal. Being out in the recruiting world, the best players this side of the Mississippi end up in the Pac-12 for the most part, obviously with exceptions. Every single one of the 12 programs, every one of them has a national level player. Some of them have lots and lots of national level players. When you really look at it and break down one to 12, it’s tough. We understand that. However, having said that, every game is a game. Colorado struggled last year, everybody knows that. With a couple exceptions, we’re in most games. There’s not a huge difference. There’s a huge difference maybe at the very top, I’m talking about Stanford, the national champion, but as you filter through the conference, they all have very good players. I don’t see anybody not getting results. I think there’s going to be a lot more crammed in the middle of the pack of the conference.”

On recruiting on in the Pac-12:
“I think for every program here it’s unbelievable. The best players want to play the best players even if they’re not on the same team. As we start recruiting, the teammates going to Stanford, the teammates going to USC, the teammates going to Cal want to play with those players and compete in this region against the best players and play on the Pac-12 Networks. It has been a boost. In our sport, recruiting is out a few years but the ones that we’re contacting and we’re working, it’s been great. The Big 12 is an awesome conference, but for women’s soccer, selfishly, the players we’re looking at and the places we’re going, it’s not hurting. Having said that, it’s helping everyone else as well. All of a sudden we went from Midwest to West. Boulder hasn’t moved I don’t think.”

On generating more offense this season:
“Anne Stuller’s got to score some goals. I think we’ll start with that. We’re moving some people around and we’re trying some different things. I think it all starts with defending. If you’re chasing a game the whole time, you’re giving up goals and you’re not going to bang in as many goals. Goal scoring is the most important piece. Goal scoring is one of the most difficult things to do. That’s why the most famous players are the richest players in the world. That’s what I tell our team. You have to have a different mentality. I think that for our players, we expect them to be able to score. So now, we’re moving some different players around, we’re trying some things. Who can be that player who can score? Who can be that player that can score at Stanford? Who can be that player that can score against Oregon State? Who can get us the winner? We’re still identifying those players, but we’re holding the players in house to a higher level of expectation. We have 12 freshmen, but we need to train our players to be better. I think they know that, and they’re capable of it. I wish there was some secret formula. I was an attacking player when I grew up, a long time ago when I could still run. I hold those players to the highest level of expectation, and they know it. I think it’s just confidence, it’s the it factor. These players in house are talented enough to get it done, it just didn’t happen last year. Hopefully we build that confidence and it happens this year.”

On his relationship with the team:
“I think whenever there’s a new coach, everybody right away is happy and ready to buy in. Eventually that initial excitement wears off and it is what it is. Sometimes when coaches come in and say ‘I want to change the culture,’ it doesn’t mean the culture of the past was bad. You can change it to what you think is going to be successful. I think that slowly but surely when we started in January all the way through preseason to 20 minutes ago, we’ve established that this is how we need to do things. It doesn’t happen overnight. However, this group of returning players has done everything I’ve asked of them on and off the field. I think that’s important. Now we need to be better, and they understand that we’re going to challenge them every day. It’s not going to be comfortable. It’s great in the spring and exhibitions when everybody gets to play, and it’s great at the alumni game today everybody got to play and pizza afterward and everyone got a free Dri-Fit shirt. The challenge starts Friday when maybe they don’t get to play or maybe they’re not starting or maybe ‘Danny hasn’t yelled at me and all of sudden, where was this Danny last January?’ That’s going to be the challenge. Now are they buying in? Now are they believing? When they lose a couple games, are they still believing? Are they still believing that we can get it done? That’s the challenge. It’s having the happy-go-lucky times not go out the window. They’re going to be tested. The freshmen, are they going to make excuses; are they going to look for reasons? You could go out there and pick out the starting 11. Are they going to challenge themselves?”

Senior Midfielder Amy Barczuk

On the women’s Olympic soccer team:
“First of all, I think it really shows the level where the Pac-12 is at. Obviously when half your national team is from the Pac-12, it shows the talent and the ability that is in that league. First and foremost, it shows how we need to work to get to that level, not only freshmen, but all the way through the senior class. It just displays how good the conference is. It’s great to see women’s soccer at such a height in the United States. Around here, football’s the big thing. It’s awesome to see people get behind the soccer team and kind of create some hype about that because I think that kind of creates an effect that causes more people to come to our games too.”

On generating more offense this season: “As Danny said, as you work your way down the Pac-12, there’s less and less difference between the teams. I think that was something. I mean last year we consistently saw 1-0 losses, it’s just those minor details, turning those 1-0 losses to 1-0 wins. It’s that one time you lose focus on defense you get scored on.  It’s that one time you don’t focus on offense, and you don’t score. I think it’s just really sharpening up those minor details in order to score more this season.”

On working with a new coach:
“I think like Danny said, everyone’s happy now. We’re in the preseason, and everyone is playing. I just think it’s important for the returners to continue to speak the same language as the coaches. Even if one of your good friends on the team isn’t playing, you don’t start making excuses for her. You still have to emphasize what Danny is trying to do and really instill your trust in the coaching staff. I think that’s really important because the coaching staff really emphasizes that everyone is on the same page. So many times in my career everyone was on different pages and never really reached to success. I think in order for this team to be successful, speaking the same language is very important.”

Junior forward Anne Stuller

On the women’s Olympic soccer team:
“The level of the Pac-12, it just shows it’s next level and a lot of prime players come out from this league. We want to be competing against the best and we’re really happy to do so. Watching those girls, we played one that’s on the national team last year, and she was awesome, we just want to keep playing players of that caliber and maybe develop some in the future too.”

On working with a new coach:
“Since day one the coaching staff made us feel really comfortable. They put pressure on us and want us to get better. Communication is huge, and I just feel like the transition was pretty smooth. I have no complaints.”

Sophomore Bianca Jones

On the women’s Olympic soccer team:
“To go off of what Amy said, it really pumps some energy into the community. When the community gets pumped up about our team, it really makes us play better so we’re really excited about that.”

On working with a new coach:
“I know that with the team, it’s just a better atmosphere. Everyone has better attitudes. Everyone just seems to be going towards the same direction. The coaching staff emphasizes the minor details, like polishing our shoes and making sure that our appearance is nice. Those kinds of things make us win, I believe.”

Prentup Pass: While general admission and parking are still free for all home games, Prentup Passes are also available for purchase for the 2012 season. For $50, the ultimate fan will have access to reserved seating in the center bleachers, a special credential, CU soccer scarf, and exclusive emails. For $100, you can get the same benefits in addition to reserved parking.  New this year, for $500, you can get all the above benefits plus a personalized reserved parking spot.  For more information or to make your purchase of the Prentup Pass or Prentup Pass Gold, please visit CUBuffs.com/prentuppass.  To purchase your Prentup Pass Platinum please contact Scott Scheifele in the Buff Club at scott.scheifele@cufund.org or 303-492-0145.