USAF ACADEMY, Colo. — The University of New Mexico women’s soccer team had its chances against fellow second-place squad Air Force, but the Lobos couldn’t find the back of the net as they fell to the Falcons 1-0 Friday night at Cadet Soccer Stadium.
The Lobos (9-6 overall, 4-3 Mountain West) outshot Air Force (7-4-3, 4-0-3) 17-12 – including 11-5 on shots on goal – but tallied a goal while the Falcons took advantage of one of their five shots on frame.
“Air Force played really well tonight and both teams created a lot of great chances,” UNM coach Heather Dyche said. “We need to capitalize on ours better heading into Sunday.”
The Lobos take on Colorado College on noon Sunday in Colorado Springs – a Tiger team that defeated San Diego State 2-1 on Friday night. The loss drops the Lobos into at least a tie for third (if UNLV wins the late Friday night game against Fresno State, UNM will drop to fourth) with 12 points. UNM is four points back of San Jose State (5-1-1, 16 points) and three behind Air Force (15 points) while remaining a point ahead of San Diego State and Boise State (both 3-2-2 for 11 points).
Air Force scored the lone goal of the game in the 70th minute on a breakaway when Kaylee Shalongo dropped it to her right just inside the penalty box and Erin Speer knocked it into the bottom-left corner with UNM keeper Emily Johnson charging.
UNM had its best chance for the equalizer in the 87th minute when Claire Lynch in the middle of the field found Jessica Nelson sprinting down the left side in the penalty box. Nelson put a good foot on it, but it hit the outside of the post to keep the Lobos behind, 1-0.
The Lobos also had their chances in the first half. In the 17th minute Alexa Cabrales took a pass from Quincy Slora and took a shot on frame, but a diving save was made to keep the game scoreless.
In the 30th minute Cabrales crossed the ball into the top of the penalty area where Jessie Hix put a good shot on frame, but the Air Force keeper was there to make a leaping save. On the rebound the ball eventually found its way to Jennifer Munoz who put a shot on frame from the far left, but it was easily saved.
UNM had one last chance in the first half as Slora played a ball into the penalty box in the 43rd minute and Hix got a head on it, but it went wide right.
The Lobos also led in corner kicks (9-4) to go along with shots and shots on goal. Hix and Amelia Bierle led UNM with three shots apiece (with both with two on goal). Munoz, Lynch and Jill Olguin had two shots apiece as well for the Lobos. Johnson finished with four saves in goal for UNM.