ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Senior leader Emerson Kidd buried a chance on a free kick in the 65th minute and three UTEP goaltenders combined for seven saves to help the Miners secure a 1-1 draw in an exhibition contest at perennial Mountain West power New Mexico Wednesday.
The Lobos managed to creep ahead 1-0 less than three minutes into the tilt, but UTEP didn’t make it easy. Miner GK Tionna Taylor denied a penalty kick from Presley Devey, but after a scramble she snuck the rebound past Taylor.
“Exhibitions can be tough right in the middle of preseason and it was exactly what we needed in preparation for our home opener next week,” first-year UTEP Head Coach Gibbs Keeton said. “I’m proud of the mental fortitude and coming together of our team after conceding an early goal. I’m looking forward to making progress next week and playing in front of our home crowd.”
The Orange and Blue remained stoic, eventually taking advantage of a set-piece strike from Kidd that bested UNM netminder Alli Davis and pulled them even at 1-1.
UTEP kept the pressure on after the tally, with a potential match-winning blast by Mina Rodriguez saved by Meg Tyssee. Rodriguez chased down the loose change, but her putback was blocked away by the Lobo defense.
Angelina Amparano recorded a team-best three saves, including two sensational stops, while Taylor and Alaina Gilbert both were credited with a pair of saves.
Cayman Tamez looked to be in midseason form by logging all 110 minutes of action, making her presence felt in every part of the pitch.
UTEP will officially kick off the 2023 season and Keeton era when it plays host to Northern Arizona at 6 p.m. MT on Aug. 17.