LOS ANGELES – The young University of New Mexico men's soccer team found itself trailing in the second half on the road against a ranked opponent Sunday evening, but the Lobos rallied with two goals in two minutes in the second half to hand No. 19 LMU its first loss of the season 2-1.
Nick Rochowski got UNM on the board in the 75th minute, and Wehan recorded the game-winner off a free kick just two minutes later to give UNM (3-1-1) its third straight win.
Each side had one really quality chance in the first half. UNM's came first in the ninth minute. Kasper Kajermoplayed a beautiful throughball to Wehan, whose touch took it into the box. But his effort from about 10 yards was saved.
LMU (5-1-0) had its chance in the 15th minute. A giveaway in the Lobo defensive half led to a breakaway by Alvaro Madrigal. He took it in all alone and let loose a rocket from just inside the 18-yard box that Lobo keeper Jason Beaulieu could do nothing with, and the Lions led 1-0 at the break.
"We played really well again," UNM head coach Jeremy Fishbein said. "They got a goal off a tackle that maybe one out of 10 times bounces the way it did, and they took it really well to get their goal. But we defended really well all game. There's a great spirit to the group, and it's exciting to be a part of it."
The Lobos came out a different team in the second half and controlled possession and the pace of play. Their efforts eventually paid off and the game changed drastically in a matter of minutes.
UNM almost tied the game in the first seconds of the second half. Josh Goss sent a free kick into the box, and an LMU defender cleared it away, but it almost went into the net for an own goal. It just barely cleared the crossbar and resulted in a Lobo corner. Through their continued efforts, they were finally able to break through.
UNM was the beneficiary of a lucky bounce on its first goal, but it had the right players in the right places to capitalize. Following a corner kick the Lobos sustained pressure. The ball eventually found its way to center back Chris Gurule on the right wing outside the 18. His cross into the box hit the post and deflected right to an unmarked Rochowski on the door step and Gurule's partner on the backline tapped it in. It was UNM's first goal scored by someone other than Wehan.
"It was nice for someone other than Wehan to get that first one," Fishbein said with a laugh, "and then Wehan hit his really well."
Wehan made his mark just two minutes later. UNM won a free kick right in the center of the pitch about 30 yards out from LMU's goal. Wehan made no doubt about it with a solid strike that found the back of the net for his sixth of the season.
The Lions stepped up their pressure after that and nearly tied it in the final 30 seconds on a bicycle kick, butJason Beaulieu was there and he knocked it away to preserve the win. He finished with five saves.
LMU (14:52): Madrigal
UNM (74:01): Rochowski (Gurule)
UNM (76:12): Wehan
New Mexico: Domiciano, yellow (34:12); Herrera, yellow (58:12)
LMU: Perez, yellow (24:41); Souza, yellow (52:05); Gordon, yellow (87:33)
LMU: Blanchette (GK), Dotseth, Ochoa, Madrigal, Sampson, Perez, Souza, Gooden, Brubaker, McLouth, McFarlin
New Mexico: Beaulieu (GK), Rochowski, Goss, Hansen, Khouri, Domiciano, Wehan, Gurule, Herrera, Dye, Kajermo
The Lobos return home and host the TLC Plumbing & Utility Invitational next weekend. UNM faces Missouri State Friday night at 7, and then will match up against American next Sunday at 6 p.m. LMU will also be there and face both the Bears and Eagles.