Tijuana got out to an early lead, but missed opportunities and a squandered lead see visitor Lobos BUAP get the three critical points, putting a sizable dent into Xolos’ Liguilla ambitions.
Tijuana started out on the front foot, looking much more confident than in their previous match against Pumas. In just the fourth minute, Tijuana would win a corner kick. Miller Bolaños took the kick, and Julián Velázquez at the near post headed it on to a wide open Gustavo “Pantera” Bou at the far post, and Pantera hit a left-footed shot into the top of the net.
It would be downhill from there for the hosts.
Lobos would try to level it, pressing forward and looking to create chances. Lobos had a shot from distance in the 13th minute when Xolos goalkeeper Gibran Lajud mis-played a clearance. This pressing by the visitors would allow Xolos to counterattack. Fabián Castillo was played in on a great ball in the 15th minute but his shot went wide of the open net. In the 17th minute, Bou would hit a rocket from 25 yards out that went straight to Lobos BUAP goalkeeper Antonio Rodríguez, and Toño was able to hang on to it.
In the 22nd minute, Bou would again hit a shot from distance that Toño Rodríguez would save, however he gave up a big rebound that he was fortunate to get to. In the 28th, Bolaños had a great give and go with Pantera, but Miller’s shot seemed rushed and it went well high of the bar.
Lobos would equalize in the 32nd minute when Leonardo Ramos slipped past his defender to get on the end of a perfect header by Mauro Lainez and headed the ball past a diving Lajud.
In the 34th minute, Tijuana almost got one when Francisco “Maza” Rodríguez tried to deflect a shot with a scorpion kick-eque maneuver that just skimmed over the top of the bar. A minute later at the other end, Lobos had a shot that was deflected by Diego Braghieri that appeared to deflect off of Braghieri’s arm, but no call was made.
Xolos would continue to test Toño Rodríguez from distance. Bolaños hit a shot from about 25 yards out in stoppage time that Toño would stop but give up a huge rebound on. Luckily for the visitors the ball was cleared.
In the 47th minute, Oscar Macías was played into the box and was run into from behind by Julián Velázquez. The penalty was awarded and confirmed by VAR. Leonardo Ramos would step up and hit it past Lajud to give Lobos the lead.
Xolos would come right back down the pitch and have a good opportunity when Gustavo Bou his a shot from distance that Rodríguez pushed out for a corner. Lobos would counter in the 55th minute, winning a two-on-one against Diego Braghieri. Braghieri was able to play it perfectly, forcing a shot from distance that Lajud was able to save.
Xolos would bring on Eryc Castillo for Ignacio Rivero to add to the offensive capabilities, and the Aztec Canines were able to apply a good amount of pressure. Jesús Angulo and Dani López would come on as well to bolster Tijuana’s offense. Xolos would ratchet up the offensive pressure but were unable to get shots on frame. Despite five minutes of stoppage time, Tijuana was unable to equalize and Lobos would leave Baja California with all three points.
Tijuana heads to Morelia to face Monarcas next Friday, while Lobos will return home to host Cruz Azul on Sunday.
Tijuana: Gibran Lajud; Luis Fuentes (Jesús Angulo, 74‘), Diego Braghieri, Julián Velázquez, Omar Mendoza; Diego Rodríguez, Ignacio Rivero (Eryc Castillo, 65’); Fabián Castillo (Daniel López, 75‘), Miller Bolaños, Gustavo Bou; Ariel Nahuelpán
Lobos BUAP: Antonio Rodríguez; Aldo Cruz, Francisco Rodríguez, Gustavo Velázquez, Félix Crisanto; Abraham González, Oscar Macías (Edson Torrés, 88’); Mauro Lainez (José Joaquín Esquivel, 80’), Bryan Rabello, Michaell Chirinos; Leonardo Ramos (Luiz Humberto da Silva, 90’)
Scoring: Tijuana - Gustavo Bou (4’); Lobos BUAP - Leonardo Ramos (32’, 49’ - penalty)
Disciplinary: Tijuana - Ariel Nahuelpán (Yellow - 31’), Omar Mendoza (Yellow - 80’); Lobos BUAP - Leonardo Ramos (Yellow - 59’)