Aggie Soccer Falls 3-1 To UTEP

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

LAS CRUCES, N.M. - The New Mexico State Aggies saw UTEP collect three goals in the last 24 minutes as the Miners upended the Aggies 3-1 on Wednesday afternoon at the NM State Soccer Athletic Complex.

The Aggies (1-6) held control of the match for the first 60 minutes of play, but the Miners (4-3) started controlling possession, then began firing away.

The Miners collected goals off of three set pieces, a throw-in and two corner kicks, and handed the Aggies their sixth loss of the season.

“We didn’t have much effort in the second half,” said a disappointed NM State Head Coach Freddy Delgado. “We come so far and played some very good teams very hard and very aggressive, but I don’t know who came out the second half. That’s not what we’ve shown this year.”

The Aggies opened the match strong battling the more physical Miners evenly, then got the advantage on their own set piece.

In the 26th minute, freshman Sabrina Ruiz of Albuquerque, N.M./Sandia rocketed a shot past UTEP keeper Alyssa Palacios from a pass by Holly Abdelkader via Rebecca Mazzie’s corner kick. It was Ruiz first goal of the season.

“We executed we worked hard, we tackled hard in the first half we did all the little things to get us the goal,” said Delgado. “The second half, we didn’t do that.”

UTEP came out attacking in the second half, and the Aggies withstood the barrage until the 67th minute.

The Miners got a deep throw-in from Aleah Davis who placed it perfectly in front of the goal for Jeanna Mullen to head past Aggie keeper Ashley Martin to even the score at 1-all.

Then just two minutes later, Martin saved a shot by knocking it away for a UTEP corner kick. The corner was dropped into the box where it ricocheted off a few player before landing at the feet of Maddie Fiest who chipped it in to give UTEP the lead.

The crushing blow came in the 75th minute.

After another of the seven UTEP corner kicks in the game, Davis had the ball on the Angela Cutaia capped the scoring with a powerful kick into the back of the net.

UTEP outshot NM State 22-9, 14-1 in the second half.

“I think we gave the game away,” said Delgado. “We continually gave them set pieces. We continually gave them corners. We set ourselves up for failure.”

Martin, a freshman from Rio Rancho, N.M./Cleveland, recorded nine saves for the Aggies, a season high. Palacios had four saves for UTEP.

After playing three matches in six days, the Aggies are off until next Friday, Sept. 18, when they meet Texas State in San Marcos, Texas.