San Antonio – Joseph Diaz and Daniel Kelly scored goals, but it wasn’t enough as Texas A&M International University defeated St. Mary’s University, 3-2, in Heartland Conference men’s soccer action Thursday afternoon at St. Mary’s University Soccer Field.
Though St. Mary’s dominated in most statistical categories, they fell behind by two goals and fell to the Dustdevils. The Rattlers outshot the Dustdevils 16-7 and took eight corner kicks to just two for TAMIU, but the Dustdevils made the most of their chances.
In just the ninth minute of the game, Albert Escovar sent a through ball to Roy Hernandez in the box, which Hernandez flicked over the head of goalkeeper Brett Collier (Jr., Schertz) for a 1-0 lead. The goal was the first shot of the game for the Dustdevils. However, the Rattlers responded in the 21st minute when Joseph Diaz (Fr., San Antonio) picked up a loose ball in the box, turned and fired a shot into the net to tie the game at 1-1. In the 43rd minute of the game Adeyemi Gill took in a pass from Julian Hierro, moved to the right side of the penalty area, turned, and as he fell away from the goal, launched a shot that crossed the penalty area and sailed into the upper left corner of the goal. That gave the Dustdevils a 2-1 lead at the break.
Just 15 minutes into the second half, Hernandez struck again for the Dustdevils, picking up a loose ball 15 yards from the goal and firing it into the net, making the 3-1. The Rattlers responded in the 77th minute when Bryon Plagge (Jr., San Antonio) took a corner kick and found Kyle Farrell (Jr., Edmond, Okla.) in the middle of the upper penalty area. Farrell passed it ahead to Daniel Kelly (Fr., Tucson, Ariz.) who half-bicycle kicked the ball into the net, cutting the TAMIU advantage to 3-2.
The Rattlers continued to press over the final 14 minutes, but were unable to get it past goalkeeper Juan Pablo Munoz, who made four saves in the win.
With the loss the Rattlers fell to 3-6 overall and 0-4 in Heartland Conference play this season. TAMIU improved to 7-4, 2-3, with the win. St. Mary’s will return to action on Friday, Oct. 17, when they host St. Edward’s University at 4 p.m. at St. Mary’s Soccer Field.