Neither rain or lightning could keep the fans away from New Mexico United’s (8-5-9) first-ever Meow Wolf night. 14,327 were in attendance as United and Austin Bold FC (9-7-6) fought to a 2-2 draw.
Despite lightening in the area and kickoff delayed, the mood of the supporters never wavered. Building off the energy in the stands, United was able to strike first. A quick throw-in to Chris Wehan caught Bold FC out of position in the final third. His run down the right side left the middle of the area free for Daniel Bruce to find his second goal of the season.
After the initial strike from United, Bold would begin to find their footing. As the match approached the half-hour mark, they would put shots off of the crossbar and the post. Amobi Okugo would head home a corner to pull the visitors back level. In what seemed to be a moment of indecision, Cody Mizell came off his line to try and play the corner, but stopped short and was too far out to attempt a save on the header.
After the half, United came out playing with a higher level of intensity, hoping to put the matter to rest. Having switched to the right side, Santi Moar was able to make a run similar to that of Wehan’s in the first half. This time, it opened up the area for Kevaughn Frater. Frater would finish with a left-footed shot, his 13th of the campaign, and put United back on top.
The lead was not to be, however. Just past the hour mark, Bold would convert off of another corner kick. The first ball in wouldn’t find its mark, but it fell to the feet of Okugo. He would push the ball past Mizell for his second of the match.
Near the end of the match, a sequence of events occurred in the Bold goal area that left many scratching their heads. Multiple United players would go down inside the area while playing or attempting to play the ball, and a yellow card was even given to Andi Faris, yet no penalty was awarded to United. Unable to find a last-minute goal, both sides walked away from the match with a lone point.
Player of the Match
Justin Schmidt – Schmidt’s defensive prowess was on display throughout the entire match. With six tackles and two interceptions, Schmidt prevented Bold from finding home several times.
After two matches at home, United return to the road for a trip to Portland. On Sunday, August 11, United silk take in Portland Timbers 2 at Providence Park. The match is set for a 7 p.m. (mountain) kickoff.
Photo courtesy Abq Journal