April 24, 2015
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – A converted penalty kick from Brandon Aubrey in stoppage time gave the University of Notre Dame men’s soccer team a 2-1 win over the Mexico Under-17 national team on Friday evening in front of 3,292 fans at Alumni Stadium.
The match was Notre Dame’s final contest of the spring exhibition season. This marked the 10th time in the last 11 years that the Fighting Irish have played host to a Mexican national team (either U20 or U17). Notre Dame is 7-2-1 in those affairs, including three straight victories.
“This is a great event,” Notre Dame head coach Bobby Clark said. “It’s always a fun way to finish your spring season. I thought we played well in pockets. We opened the game well and had good spells.”
Notre Dame controlled much of the possession in the first half of Friday’s match and had a few good looks early on. In the fourth minute, forward Jeffrey Farina worked his way deep into the box and fired off a shot that was deflected over the crossbar.
Irish midfielder Patrick Hodan threatened in the 17th minute, but he just couldn’t get enough on his 10-yard attempt, which was cleared off the line by a Mexico defender. Minutes later, Jon Gallagher crossed the ball to Farina who had his shot from eight yards out tipped over the crossbar.
Mexico didn’t register its first shot until the 30th minute when Ivan Gutierrez placed the ball on frame and Irish goalkeeper Brian Talcott made the easy save. That was the lone save for Talcott, who played the first half before giving way to Chris Hubbard.
The match was scoreless at halftime.
In the 51st minute, Farina connected on a shot from 14 yards away but it was deflected and banged off the crossbar.
Mexico mounted some offense around the 65th minute. Hubbard, who had two stops on the night, saved a Jesus Gurrola shot and soon after Alejandro Zamora placed his shot just wide of the near post.
Notre Dame went up 1-0 in the 66th minute when Farina played the ball ahead to Gallagher and he dribbled to just inside the penalty box and hammered home the goal.
Mexico’s equalizer came in the 88th minute as Nahum Gomez sent a cross into the six-yard box and the Irish defense couldn’t clear it and Manuel Escoto sent the ball to the back of the net.
“I felt that after we scored we stopped playing,” Clark said. “We were just trying to hold on. But what I liked best was the attitude right after we lost the goal in the last couple minutes of the game. We came out and tried to win it again.”
The match was tied after 90 minutes, but Mexico was whistled for a foul in the penalty box over a minute into stoppage time and Aubrey, a central defender, connected on the game winner.
Notre Dame outshot Mexico 10-6, including a 6-4 edge in shots on goal. The Fighting Irish also owned a 6-4 advantage in corner kicks.
April 24, 2015
Alumni Stadium – Notre Dame, Indiana
Mexico U17 0 1 – 1
Notre Dame 0 2 – 2