Sports Desk: NM United ready to bounce back, host rival El Paso

FOX New Mexico

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – New Mexico United is hoping to return to the win column Saturday night when they host rival and league-leading El Paso Locomotive. It will be the first time El Paso has played in the Duke City since the 2019 season.

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COVID restrictions in the state kept New Mexico on the road last season. The match will be the latest in many meetings between the two rivals. “Clearly the one that sticks out in our mind is the last one we played where we’re up one nil and they end up coming back 2-1,” said NM United head coach Troy Lesesne. “That was a tough one for us on the road. So, we want to try to approach that like they had whenever we played at their place, just have the fans supporting us for a change and if we’re up one-nil, I feel like we’re going to hold onto that lead and get three points.”

New Mexico suffered a setback at San Antonio earlier in the week, looking a bit out of sync. “I think we’re really good at home, but we got to be the road dogs again,” said NM United midfielder Sergio Rivas. “We got to bring the energy, more energy out of the house.” NM United defender Kalen Ryden agrees. He just wants to see a complete game. “It’s going to take a complete 90 minutes that’s one thing that we’ve struggled to do some this year,” said Ryden. “We’ve had good halves. We’ve had good moments in halves. We need to put it together a full 90.”

With 6 wins, 2 draws and 6 losses, New Mexico currently sits in third place in the USL Championship Western Conference Mountain Division. Game time Saturday is 7:30 at Rio Grande Credit Union Field at Isotopes Park.

In other sports news, the Albuquerque Isotopes started their six-game road trip in El Paso with a 9-4 defeat. One silver lining for the Isotopes is that they didn’t have any errors. The Isotopes tied a franchise record for most consecutive games without an error that was set from June 15-28 in 2006.

Sunset Little League in Rio Rancho is going to southwest regionals in Waco, Texas representing New Mexico. The group of 11 and 12-year-old players won the state championship in Santa Fe Thursday night with a 19-2 victory over Carlsbad. Sunset will play Oklahoma on Aug. 5 at 10 am.

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott had a full practice Thursday and did not show any ill effects from a compound fracture and dislocated ankle that ended his season last year. In fact, Prescott would like to play in the preseason.

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