New Mexico United rallied from behind to soundly best Eastern Conference foe Indy Eleven on Friday night, winning by a 3-2 margin in front of 8,527 fans and moving to within three points of playoff positioning in the West. The match was delayed by 53 minutes, due to lightning in the area.
It was Indy who got on the board first in this one, as Sebastian Guenzatti tucked home off of a corner kick in the ninth minute to take a 0-1 lead. Two minutes later, United nearly equalized, as Nicky Hernandez sent a cross to the near post run of Amando Moreno, who’s header glanced off the bar and out.
In the 24th minute, Guenzatti was judged to have been taken down in the United box, earning a penalty for Indy. But Andrew Thomas stepped up in a massive way, diving to his right to stonewall Guenzatti’s attempt from the spot, and keep the deficit at one.
United would get their equalizer just before halftime, as Hernandez received a pass from Shanyder Borgelin near the top of the box, and slotted a low diagonal toward Sergio Rivas, who tucked underneath the goalkeeper for a 1-1 score.
Hernandez took a long, low pass along the right side, cut inside on his left foot, and fired low past the keeper for a lead that United would not relinquish. In the 83rd minute, it was United’s turn to shoot from the penalty spot, as Greg Hurst was taken down by the keeper. Justin Portillo stepped up and delivered, stretching the Black & Yellow lead to two on just the second penalty of the season for New Mexico.
Indy added a late consolation goal, but couldn’t complete the comeback.