Amarillo, TX – New Mexico has been having a season of excitement and one that’s been what many would call fantastic. The Runners came into Amarillo with an undefeated record which was the best start in franchise history. The matchup between Amarillo and New Mexico would be a wild west showdown.
In the first quarter, New Mexico didn’t take long to draw first blood as league leading scorer Mehrshad Ahmad fired one in at the 13:43 mark. Just two minutes later, Terry Zamora puts things in reverse with another tally for the Runners to lead Amarillo 2-0. The Bombers, who have been competitive all season, found a way to scrap New Mexico’s clean sheet by finding a way past Runners’ goalkeeper Nate Yeager. The Runners wouldn’t let Amarillo press much as Jaxn Rogers and Vince Aragon (assisted by Skylor Rose) would tack on two more goals making things 4-1 in Runners favor with 6:59 left in the 1st quarter. Like mentioned before, Amarillo wouldn’t just give in as 2 unanswered goals within 90 seconds closed the gap. Zamora added a second to give the Runners a 5-4 lead at the end of the 1st quarter.
The second quarter between both teams was one of action and drama. Team captain Froilan Ramirez found a way to set up New Mexico for a shot on goal to lead 6-4 with 13 minutes on the clock. It was a back and forth between teams as Amarillo answered back at 12:01. Ahmadi didn’t let the Bombers get too far as he snuck in a goal just 10 seconds later to continue to lead 7-5. A clash of titans ensued as multiple injuries were sustained including goalie Yeager as well as Castaneda. Castaneda shook off the dirt and finished the half as Amarillo held a 9-7 lead over New Mexico.
The Bombers kept their foot on the gas coming into the 3rd quarter as they found a lane to score with 13:48 on the clock. Rogers didn’t let things get too far as just 10 seconds later got one back for the Runners still trailing 8-10. A battle of wits was won by Josh Garcia at the 8:11 mark as he lasers one in. Runners only down by 1. A misplaced ball by New Mexico let Amarillo slip by to extend the lead once again 9-11. Number 4 Colton Oord would make things fire as he hustled downfield to cut the Amarillo lead 10-12 at 5:24. Things start to get chippy between teams and more collisions take place. The Bombers would score 3 unanswered to end the third.
Quarter 4 was one to be shot out like a canon for the Runners. Ahmadi would get fouled with 12:23 on the clock. Only 12 seconds would pass until Ahmadi gets redemption and finds the back of the net. Runners 11 Bombers 15. Defenses on both teams seemed to retract as both New Mexico and Amarillo both continued to press offensive fronts. The Bombers would go on to score 2 unanswered as New Mexico’s Rogers gets placed in as a 6th attacker. As injuries continued to plague the Runners, Amarillo would fire in multiple. Yeager, Famiglietta, and even Castaneda sustained injuries that would send them to the bench. Aragon would be the last to score in the wild west matchup and the game would end with Amarillo defeating the Runners 21-12.
Ahmadi had 3 goals on the night. Aragon, Zamora, & Rogers all had 2.
New Mexico is handed their first loss of the season and is now 3-1. The Runners will face the Wichita Wings (3-2) on the road on February 4th, 2023.
Andres TrujilloOwner & CEO
New Mexico Runners Professional Arena Soccer
Major Arena Soccer League
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