Aggie Soccer kicks off conference play with a high intensity tie against Utah Valley


Carlos Herrera

The Aggies celebrate a goal made by Bianca Chacon during Saturday’s game against Utah Valley on Sept. 16, 2022.

The New Mexico State soccer team challenged one of the best teams in the conference Friday evening, Utah Valley. Kicking off the Western Athletic Conference on Aggie land consisted of a heavy defensive battle on the field, with both teams struggling to recognize the goal-scoring chances, the outcome ended fair. This brought NM States record to 3-2-2 for the season and 0-0-1 in the WAC.  

It was evident within minutes that both opponents were fighting to get ahead in the early days of the conference games. There were a few physical hits exchanged early, emphasizing the intensity level of the matchup. With little offensive action despite 11 shots on goal, the Wolverines managed to land the upper hand in the last 10 minutes of the first with a score thanks to Preseason First Team All-WAC selection Heather Stainbrook. Unfortunately for the Aggies nothing would go as they finished out the half with six attempts on goal.  

The tide made an obvious shift as the crowd could see a difference as NMSU began to communicate and not let the Wolverines open up holes in the Aggie defense in the second half. Continuing the theme of late pivotal scores, sophomore Bianca Chacon executed her fourth goal of the 2022 season in the 72’ with a beautiful shot just outside the box hitting the top right corner gracefully. Assisting Chacon was Senior Xitlaly Hernandez, making it her fourth-season assist.  

“It was a war; they are a solid team. I think our team kind of got thrown around in the first half, we kind of chased the game a bit,” Head Coach Rob Baarts continued. “Made a few adjustments in the second and I think it got us back in the game. Good strike by Bianca [Chacon] for sure. It was a solid performance. Obviously, you want to start the conference with a win, but you know what, as long as you get in there and grind out the tide. UVU is going to do a lot of damage this year.” 

Proving to have its fair share of physical plays, the match ended with six fouls on the Aggies and six on the Wolverines. Defensively, NM State gave a bit more room for UVU as they allowed 16 shots on goal, with goalkeeper Makenna Gottschalk picking up four saves for a total of 27 on season.  

Valerie Guha, freshman goal keeper, prevents Utah Valley from scoring on Sept.14, 2022. (Carlos Herrera)

The New Mexico State women’s soccer campaign will be back on the Aggie field today, Sept. 18th. While their record now holds a tie, they will be playing for their first conference win. Utilizing the lessons learned from Friday’s games, the girls will take on the Seattle University Redhawks at 1 p.m.    



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