Wolf Down: Can the Lobos attack and defend against #22 Texas Tech
After a fierce four-goal first period, the Lobos focused on keeping the 6-0 clean sheet intact.
UNM Lobo Women’s Soccer closed out their exhibition matches on Wednesday, August 21. The format of the evening changed from two 45-minute periods to three 30-minute periods. The Lobos defeated CSU Pueblo Thunderwolves 6-0 at UNM Soccer Complex.
By Chris Walker | Photo: Tim March (XL Photos)
Path on the Pitch
The Lobos found a rhythm early in this match against CSU Pueblo. They made the most of their time in-possession by creating enough chances to produce four goals in a thirty-minute period. When the Lobos were out-of-possession, they kept a high press and focused on winning the ball in Pueblo’s defending half. Pueblo went on a couple runs in this match, but there was never a stint where the Lobos were steadily on their defending half.
Lobo forward, Leilani Baker, earned a Hat Trick on the evening with goals scored in the 19-minute, 28-minute, and 86-minute marks. Baker plays a noticeable role when the Lobos are out-of-possession. She stalks the ball and runs up on the player in possession. Baker wins 1v1 duels on the pitch. She also has bursts of speed to outrun the opposition in pursuit of loose balls, as well as, on scoring runs. Baker’s second goal was set up by redshirt freshman Kylie Russell. Russell won the ball away from Pueblo in the Lobos defending half and blasted a long pass out in front of Baker and Baker sped up to the ball, went wide left as the keeper followed and quickly shuttled a shot into the right side of the goal. This put the Lobos up 4-0 after 30 minutes of play.
The Lobos got some looks in their defending half from Pueblo. Not enough to answer the question of whether the Lobos are defensively ready for teams that live on the attacking half of the pitch. In the second and third periods of this match, it’s notable to mention that the Lobos only scored one goal each period and still managed to control time in-possession. During these periods, the shot cannons were firing off as every Lobo had a boot on the ball. Lobos cannot get hasty with numbers up in the box.
L- Maysa Walters at 5’; Mackenna Havenor (A); L-Leilani Baker at 19’; Jessie Hix (A); L-Alesia Garcia at 21’; L-Leilani Baker at 28’; Kylie Russell (A); L-Gwen Maly at 32’; Cami Floth (A); L-Leilani Baker at 86’
L-Malia Vanisi (Saves: 1); L-Emily Johnson (Saves:1); Both goalkeepers share the clean sheet.
Pace of the Pack
Leilani Baker: Baker earned her Hat Trick on the evening scoring goals in the 19’, 28’, and 86’ marks. She spent most of her time disrupting Pueblo in being able to build up out of the back. Baker challenged for the ball on many occasions by chasing down or outrunning Pueblo fullbacks to win it. Baker challenged Pueblo goalkeeper Rylie Martin 1v1 taking her out wide before nailing the left post and watch her shot ricochet into the goal.
Next Hunt (#22 Texas Tech 1-0-0)
Texas Tech posted 14 wins and defeated four ranked opponents in 2018 to find themselves sitting at no. 24 by the end of the season. Texas Tech is coming off of a 6-1 victory on the road over San Diego State University. Tech scored five unanswered goals. Jayne Lydiatt scored Tech’s first two goals. Kirsten Davis scored both of her goals in the 37-minute mark. Tech took advantage of SDSU’s backline not being able to transition back onto defense fast enough. Tech also won their 1v1 duels out on the right and left channels to create scoring opportunities. Tech had 14 shots with 9 being on frame.
During the second half, SDSU scored on a penalty kick and showed new life. SDSU gave Tech some real looks in Tech’s defending half. SDSU only rotated in 3 players, whereas, Tech subbed heavy. Davis and Lydiatt played for 70 minutes each so they are match fit. Tech’s 2018 leading scorer, Jade King, did not get into the score line in this match.
This will be Tech’s third match on the road, second of their 2019 regular season campaign. This will be the Lobos first match of their 2019 regular season campaign. This will be the Lobos third match at home. This will the 12th meeting between these two programs. Tech has won the last 5 matches in the series.
- Lobos must force Tech out of their shape by utilizing the wingers.
- Lobos must create and finish chances.
- Lobos must keep their defensive shape because it will be tested early.
- Lobos must win the second half by out possessing the ball.
#22 Texas Tech Red Raiders at University of New Mexico Lobos
Sunday, August 25 at UNM Soccer Complex at 7 pm MT
Live Stream available on the Mountain West Network (https://themw.com/)
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