The DU Pioneers are all too familiar with playing past the final whistle, but their momentum faltered while visiting the Gonzaga University Bulldogs at Luger Field where the Pios fell 2-1 in extra time.
Denver (5-5-0, 0-0-0 Summit League) had a an early lead 1-0 lead that the Bulldogs soon mirrored, sending the game into overtime. Gonzaga (6-3-1 ,0-0-0 West Coast Conference) would clinch the victory just 58 seconds into play as Joe Corner fed a ball outside the six-yard line that midfielder Christo Michaelson got a foot onto, beating Denver’s goalie Nick Gardner.
The Bulldogs played with a man-down for the final stretch of the match as Jalen Crisler was issued a red card for yanking down DU’s Eric Kronenberg down from behind; his second offense of the night. Crisler was sent off in the 83rd minute.
The Pioneers opened up their scoring as junior Ryan Barlow carried over his prosperous touch from DU’s 3-1 victory over Saint Louis Sept. 26 where the midfielder had a brace. Barlow helped set up junior striker Kenny Akamatsu put Denver on the board in the 42nd minute of the first half. Akamatsu’s goal marked his first of the 2017 campaign.
Just six minutes into the second half, freshman outside back, Jacob Stensson conceded a penalty kick as he and another player were challenging a ball in mid-air inside the box. The Bulldogs’ Ben White scored the PK, to tie the match one goal per side.
Denver opens up conference play against Eastern Illinois University returning to CIBER Field before heading back out on the road for a four-match stint.