NMSU Soccer Falls To Rival New Mexico 1-0

Written By: NM State Athletic Dept.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - The New Mexico State women’s soccer team gave up a late penalty kick and dropped a 1-0 decision to Battle of I 25 rival UNM on Friday night in Albuquerque, N.M.

“In all reality, we had one of our best performances of the year,” said head Coach Rob Baarts. “We controlled the game, they had a few chances, we had our chances but at the end of the day we had a one-on-one that we let slip and end up fouling.”

The Aggies (1-7) came out aggressive and dominated possession for much of the first half, getting the ball from the wings into the middle of the box and putting a lot of pressure on New Mexico (4-3) keeper Emily Johnson which led to New Mexico State getting four shots in the first 10 minutes of the match.

However, Audriana Chavez missed wide in the 4th minute, Aileen Galicia’s shot was saved in the 6th minute and two chances from Katie Martinez missed in the 8th and 9th minutes.

NM State had two more chances to take an early lead but chances by Martinez and Chavez in the 13th minute went wide and were blocked respectively.

The two teams went back and forth until it appeared that UNM’s Jadyn Edwards would score a sure goal in the 36th minute on an empty net after baiting goalie Ashley Martin off her line. However, Samantha Afonso would recover to clear the ball before it could go in to keep the rivals locked at zero.

Rebecca Mazzie nearly gave the Aggies the lead before halftime but Johnson was there to make the save in the 42nd minute while Alesia Garcia tested Martin in the 45th minute who recorded a save to keep the game knotted headed into the break.

After halftime, New Mexico State had its best chance yet for a goal but Galicia’s header in the 47th minute hit off the crossbar and bounced out. The Aggies again had a chance to go ahead but Kelly Burton’s shot in the 52nd minute was saved by Malia Vanisi, who checked in for Johnson at halftime.

New Mexico ramped up the pressure and had a number of good looks but never challenged Martin. That pressure would pay off later, however, as a one-one-one in the box drew a foul from an NM State defender to set up a penalty kick for the Lobos in the 75th minute

Freshman Alesia Garcia then stepped to the spot for UNM and beat Martin to the keeper’s left to give the Lobos a 1-0 lead.

The Aggies continued to push with a shot from Rachel Wolter missing just high in the 79th minute while Martinez’s try in the 83rd barely missed finding the far corner. Emma Smith had one last chance for New Mexico State but her shot in the 89th was saved by Vanisi and New Mexico was able to run out the clock from there.

“They had maybe two other real goal-scoring chances that Ashley made a couple of good saves other than that, that was it and then they had the PK,” added Baarts. “In all reality, it was a good performance from our team and again we learned a valuable lesson today to help get ready for conference.”

NM State outshot the Lobos 21-16 while UNM held a 7-5 edge in shots on goal. The Aggies also had more corner kicks than New Mexico, holding a 6-5 edge. Martin finished the match with five saves while Johnson recorded three in the first half and Vanisi two in the second half.

NM State is back in action at home on Thursday, Sept. 20 at 4 p.m. (MT) as it hosts South Dakota before wrapping up its non-conference slate at Battle of I 10 rival UTEP on Sunday, Sept. 23, at 6 p.m. Fans unable to make it to the Soccer Athletic Complex for Thursday’s match can catch the action via the WAC Digital Network while the UTEP game is available through Watch Conference USA.