On an Independence Day nightcap the BYU Cougars faced off against Burlingame Dragons FC at South Field. With the Cougars still trying to notch their first win of the season they were determined but had to do it against a Dragons team that had only lost one game on the year. The Dragons came out strong and had the Cougars on their heels early. In the 3rd minute the Dragons put the ball in the box where it was headed to a sliding Josh Smith for the early goal. Down early the Cougars picked up their aggression and began to attack. With the attack the Cougars defense suffered a bit and the Dragons found themselves with another scoring chance but the ball sailed just over the net.
With the Cougars facing an aggressive offense they decided to continue to play attacker and it paid off in the 10th minute. With few defenders to stop him, Garrett Gee took the long shot outside the box and found the left corner past the Dragons Keeper Joshua Cohen. Knotted at one the Cougars continue to press and both teams picked up the physical play. The Cougars once again found the back of the net in the 20th minute as they earned a free kick just outside the box. Dallin Cutler took the kick and lobbed it perfectly into the box where Junior Lartey slipped it past Cohen for the 2-1 lead.
The physical play led to a couple of yellow cards but both teams earned stops. The Cougars looked like they would walk into the locker room with a lead but an extra time corner kick turned into disaster. After the Cougars cleared the kick it came right back into the box where Cougar Keeper Jake Petersen stopped the ball in the box but another Cougar ran into him knocking the ball lose and back towards the goal. BYU still had a chance to clear it but the kick went off a Cougar and rolled into the net for the own goal and the equalizer.
The second half continued to be physical as yellow cards began to come out and the game became a bit chippy. Yellow cards in the 51st and 65th minute on the Dragons didn't lead to points, even with aggressive Cougar play. The Dragons capitalized on a Cougars defensive error in the 53rd minute as Petersen came out to stop the ball and the Dragons slipped it past for the 3-2 lead. Both teams had chances to score late in the half but the keepers defense thwarted the offensive attempts. In the 68th minute Ethan Meyer earned a yellow card for the Cougars but LeSueur went high or the block and pushed it over the net. The yellow cards began to pile up in the second half and the official rarely took his whistle out of his mouth.
In the 76th minute the Dragons had another chance to score off a corner kick but Petersen went high for the ball and pulled it down to clear it. The Cougars had a shot in the 78th minute when a penalty on the Dragons gave Jace Green a free kick just outside the box but it went over the post by inches. With the one point lead the Dragons continued to attack and kept the ball moving on the Cougars side of the field. With another chance to score the Dragons faced off with Peterson one-on-one but he was up to the task as he stopped a close kick and deflected it out of bounds.
Even with four minutes of extra time the Cougars were unable to penetrate the Dragons defense and once again failed to hold onto an early lead.
With the loss the Cougars stay win-less in the PDL and carry a 0-7-5 record into their next game at Burlingame. The next, and final, home game for the Cougars is on Saturday July 11th at 7:30 pm against Real Colorado. Plan on attending as will be Senior Night for our beloved Cougars.