SOUTH BEND, IND. --- Despite over 89 minutes of strong, evenly-matched play and confident defense, the University of New Mexico men's soccer team fell in the final 30 seconds of its season opener against #13 Indiana by a score of 1-0 on Friday afternoon.
The squads were evenly matched throughout the entire competition. After 45 minutes of play, Indiana edged the Lobos in shots by just one, 5-4 and ultimately claimed a 14-12 shot advantage in 90. Both teams posted a total of four shots on goal.
"Statistically we were pretty evenly matched," head coachJeremy Fishbein said. "As the game moved on, we got better and better and we showed resiliency and confidence. I'm proud of how the guys played, we were tough, created chances and defended comfortably."
The Lobos' season opener looked to be headed into overtime against the nationally ranked Hoosiers when, with just 30 seconds on the clock, a foul was called in the box on UNM, allowing Indiana's Tanner Thompson to take a penalty kick. Thompson's goal made its way past junior Lobo goalkeeper Jason Beaulieu for the 1-0 victory.
"It is unfortunate to lose a game in the last 30 seconds and it is never good to put yourself in a situation where the referees can make a call that can control the outcome of the game," Fishbein added, "but overall we played well and this is a game we're going to build on."
Indiana got started early on the offensive front, securing the first corner kick of the game just 1:56 into the match, but the Lobo defense held strong and the offense fired. Senior Chris Wehan posted two shots on goal while classmate Niko Hansen and sophomore Patrick Khouri added two more to total New Mexico's four.
Overall, New Mexico posted just one corner kick in the first half, compared to three for Indiana. In the second half however, the Hoosiers held a commanding 4-0 advantage in corner kicks, which the Lobo defense effectively deflected.
After posting three exhibition shutouts, Beaulieu takes his first loss of the season, collecting three saves in net compared to four for Indiana's Colin Webb.
The Lobos are set to take on #9 Notre Dame on Sunday, Aug. 28 for their final contest of the Mike Berticelli Memorial Tournament.