COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC rallied from a first-half deficit to take a 2-1 victory against New Mexico United at Weidner Field on Saturday afternoon, claiming the club’s first victory against New Mexico in the all-time series between the clubs.
Both sides opened energetically, but it wasn’t until the 15th minute that New Mexico managed the first serious effort at goal as Chris Wehan curled a shot over the crossbar from 20 yards. Christian Volesky then had a volleyed effort slide wide of the right post five minutes later for the hosts as he tried to lift a cross from the left with an overhead effort.
Just before the half-hour mark, however, New Mexico grabbed the lead. A looping cross by Juan Guzman from the right side reached Josh Suggs in the left side of the penalty area, and the New Mexico defender was able to navigate past a defender and cut back a pass to Amando Moreno near the six-yard area. Moreno’s initial effort was saved by Switchbacks goalkeeper Abe Rodriguez, but Devon Sandoval was on hand to put home the rebound.
Rodriguez was called on again soon after as both Wehan and Andrew Tinari had efforts from outside the penalty area that the young goalkeeper held comfortably to keep it a one-goal game. Then in the final minute of the half the Switchbacks were given the change to pull level as NMU goalkeeper Cody Mizell brought down Colorado Springs’ George Lebese, resulting in a penalty kick. Volesky stepped up and coolly finished into the right corner as Mizell went the opposite way.
The Switchbacks then took the lead three minutes into the second half as Aidan Daniels picked up possession in the United half and cut through two defenders and into the right channel before driving forward toward the top of the penalty area. As he moved centrally the ball set up for Luke Ferreira, who hit a first-time shot to the bottom-right corner of the net for his first goal in Switchbacks colors.
New Mexico almost hit back just past the hour-mark as after a corner kick was cleared, Rashid Tetteh delivered a pass back into the penalty area to Moreno, who took one touch to control and turn but couldn’t send his finish on target. Austin Yearwood then went close with 16 minutes to go as his header from a corner on the right went wide of the left post.
United continued to press in search of an equalizer late on as Moreno had a shot saved by Rodriguez in the 82nd minute and the Wehan was denied from a narrow angle five minutes later. When Kalen Ryden’s headed effort went wide of the left post in second-half stoppage time, however, the Switchbacks walked away with all three points.
USLChampionship.com Man of the Match
Christian Volesky, Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC – Volesky pulled the Switchbacks level from the penalty spot, had two shots and two key passes and won 9 of 17 duels to lead the attacking line.