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Liga MX Femenil recap: 2022 Clausura, Week 8

Rayadas remain perfect as the league gets back in action after the international break.

Desire Monsivais of Monterrey reacts during the match between Pumas and Monterrey as part of the Torneo Grita Mexico A21 Liga MX Femenil at Olimpico Universitario Stadium on August 02, 2021 in Mexico City, Mexico. Photo by Mauricio Salas/Jam Media/Getty Images

The international break is done and dusted, and while most teams had off there were two games on the docket, making up for missed matches from earlier in the season. The teams all came back this week, however some were missing some significant players with the U20 tournament taking place. Still, there was plenty of good soccer to be had.

Monterrey 3, Gallos Blancos de Querétaro 0 (Week 1): Monterrey with a fantastic win over a tough Querétaro team in the off-week, a make up match for the Week 1 postponement. Christina Burkenroad put Rayadas up for good in the 13th minute when Valeria Valdez played a great ball forward for Burkenroad, who got past the defense and shot past Vanessa Córdoba. Five minutes later Rayadas scored again, this time with some great passing creating space for Nicole Pérez, who hit the square ball from Dani Solís with pace. Solís almost got one of her own in the 26th, getting to a great cross from Pérez but putting it into the side netting. Dani Sánchez almost drew one back for Querétaro in the 30th minute, taking an opportunistic shot off of a turnover but putting it just wide. Two minutes later though Monterrey struck again, this time with Mónica Flores hitting an absolute golazo from the top of the box. Desirée Monsiváis had a powerful header in the 35th but Córdoba did well to stop it. Córdoba was kept busy throughout the second half and was lucky to not have conceded a penalty in the 50th for using her elbow to shove Monsivás after making a save.

FC Juárez 1, Tigres UANL 2 (Week 3): Tigres also had a game during the break, making up for their Week 3 match against FC Juárez, picking up a 2-1 win in the Borderland. Tigres struck first in the 13th minute when Jackie Ovalle made a run down the left and hit a pinpoint cross in to Stephany Mayor, who headed it into the back of the net. A scary moment in the 30th when Paulina Solís and Mia Fishel went for a ball and Solís went down, clutching her shoulder. She’d be carted off of the field and re-appear later with her shoulder and arm bandaged and in a sling. Juárez almost had one in stoppage time after the first half when a free kick seemed to get caught in the wind and moved in flight, carrying toward the corner of the net and forcing Ofelia Solís to make a good save to keep it out. Juárez did even the match in the 49th on a corner kick that got caught in the win. Solís went up for it and collided with a Juárez player, allowing Rubí Villegas to get to the bouncing ball and knock it over the line. Miriam García tried to clear the ball, but referee José Luis Alba ruled it a goal (and replays later confirmed he most likely got it right). Ovalle had a golden opportunity in the 51st to draw it level, getting a pass from Mayor all alone on the left side but putting the ball wide on the outside of the net. It looked like it would end in a tie until the second minute of stoppage when Fer Elizondo got to a through ball that the defense just whiffed on, tapping it past Cristina Holguin for the game winner.

Cruz Azul 2, Club Tijuana 2: Both of these teams have been playing good soccer lately, so it’s not too big a surprise that they drew, although both teams may feel they should have come away with all three points. Tijuana got the lead early when Angelina Hix headed a free kick into the net in the 18th minute, and that held into the second half, although both teams had several chances to score. Cruz Azul finally pulled level in the 55th when Diana García made a run down the right side and Tania Morales headed it in past Alejandra Gutiérrez. García got one of her own three minutes later, driving home a loose ball in the box off of a corner kick. The lead would last, but Cruz Azul couldn’t hold on to it. In the 82nd minute, Renae Cuéllar drove down and hit a shot that goalkeeper Karla Morales tried to kick out of the box but only deflected it up into the air. The momentum and spin of the ball sent it up and into the back of the net, drawing a point back for Tijuana in the process.

Puebla F.C. 2, UNAM Pumas 1: Puebla gets a good win over a slumping Pumas. Puebla came out hot, and it paid off in the fifth minute when Dulce Martínez headed in a corner kick off of the far post to give the hosts a lead. Puebla didn’t let up, and in the 22nd minute a great through ball found Verónica Martins, who hit a shot between the legs of goalkeeper Melany Villeda. Both Villeda and her counterpart Siena Ruelas had plenty to do to keep the score down, as both teams had several decent chances. Pumas drew one back in the 42nd when Stephanie Ribiero got a ball over the top, chested it down, and then hit a volley that Ruelas couldn’t stop. Puebla almost tacked on another when a shot from distance that caught Villeda a bit off of her line hit the crossbar, which then hit Villeda in the back and deflected out of bounds. With the result, Pumas sinks to eleventh place from seventh, while Puebla moves up to 15th.

Club Atlético de San Luis 0, Guadalajara 0: Chivas slips a little with a 0-0 draw against San Luis, dropping to fourth place on the table. Blanca Félix picked up her fourth clean sheet in four appearances for Chivas, with Chivas picking up their fifth overall this season. Ivette Alvarado picked up her first clean sheet of the year, with San Luis getting their second straight draw.

FC Juárez 0, Toluca 1: Toluca picks up a sorely needed win against bottom of the table Juárez, who continue to struggle. Toluca got the game’s only goal in the 16th minute when Destinney Duron hit a shot from distance through traffic that beat Christina Holguin just inside the post. Heidi González picked up her first clean sheet of the season in just her second appearance as Toluca moves up to 13th on the table.

América 3, Mazatlán FC 0: América keeps pace with Tigres and Monterrey with a resounding 3-0 win over Mazatlán at Coapa. América dominated the match and had the lion’s share of the opportunities in the first half, coming close to scoring on several occasions. They finally broke through however in the 51st minute on a golazo from Scarlett Camberos, hitting a swerving ball through traffic and past Alondra Ubaldo. Mazatlán almost equalized a couple of minutes later when a shot crashed off of the crossbar, although had it been more on frame Renata Masciarelli most likely would have stopped it. In the 58th there was some controversy as Dani Espinosa hit a shot into the box that was blocked by a Mazatlán defender. While replays showed it hit the player in the arm, the penalty was not awarded. It wouldn’t matter, because in the 64th América doubled the lead when Katty Martínez picked up a loose ball off of a defensive mistake and hammered it into the back of the net. “Katty Killer” got her brace a minute later when Camberos drove down the right, crossed it to Sarah Luebbert on the left, who played it back centrally to Martínez for what was essentially a tap in. Martínez’ seven goals have her just one behind Licha Cervantes and Charlyn Corral for the league lead.

Necaxa 0, León 0: Both teams had several good chances, but the defenses came up big every time. It looked like León were going to go up in the 16th minute, but a goal line clearance by Karen De León kept Selene Castillo’s shot from being knocked in by Yazmin Álvarez. At the other end, Luciana García Riefkohl had a good opportunity in on goal in stoppage time but Ángeles Martínez did well to cut down the angle and García Riefkohl’s shot went wide. Martínez and Dani Muñoz both picked up their first shutouts of the season in the tie.

Pachuca 0, Tigres UANL 1: Pachuca held their own against Tigres, but ultimately it was the visitors taking all three points on the evening. Tigres were aggressive from the start, with Mia Fishel getting a header just wide in the first minute of play. Greta Espinoza had a great header off of a free kick in the 20th minute that goalkeeper Esthefanny Barreras did well to turn over the bar. Then off of the ensuing play Natalia Gómez-Junco started a counterattack that lead to Charlyn Corral in one-on-one with goalkeeper Ceci Santiago, and it was Santiago prevailing, snuffing out Corral’s shot. Barreras made another great save in the 33rd minute on a Fishel shot from the top of the box, and then an even better one point-blank on Belén Cruz a minute later. Barreras couldn’t stop them all however, and in the 41st minute Jackie Ovalle crossed it in for a Stephany Mayor header that just evaded the fingertips of the diving goalkeeper for the game’s lone goal. It looked like Tigres were going to get a second in the 54th minute when Karen Díaz took Fishel down in the box, but no foul was called despite referee Ignacio Góngora seemingly having a clear view of the play. Pachuca almost equalized in the 60th minute when Viridiana Salazar was played in on goal, but her shot was slowed down by Santiago before being cleared off of the line by Bianca Sierra. Corral had another shot in the 73rd from close range that Santiago pushed up and over the bar to secure Tigres’ fourth straight win.

Santos Laguna 0, Gallos Blancos de Querétaro 1: Santos played well but once again found themselves on the wrong end of the scoresheet, losing 1-0 to Querétaro. Dani Sánchez got the game’s only goal in the 66th minute when she lost her defender and hit a header that floated into the top corner of the net. Querétaro has now climbed into Liguilla position for the first time all season, rising to sixth place from tenth while Santos sits in the next-to-last place after their fourth straight loss.

Monterrey 5, Atlas 1: Atlas kept it relatively close until a Desirée Monsiváis hat trick blew the game open for Rayadas. Rayadas opened the scoring in the 22nd minute when Monsivás hit a shot that Ana Gaby Paz did well to save. The rebound was crossed over to Crhistina Burkenroad, whose attempt was also stopped by Paz but Rebeca Bernal rifled the rebound into the top of the net. The lead lasted all of two minutes however thanks to Fabiola Ibarra getting control of a free kick and hitting a fabulous shot with her non-dominant right foot. The tie however was also short lived, as Burkenroad hit a shot from distance in the 29th minute that beat Paz to reclaim the lead for the home side. That scoreline hung around until the 73rd minute when Paz collided with a defender going after a Diana Evangelista cross, leaving the ball at Monsiváis’ feet with a wide open net. Paz did well to knock aside a header from Dani Solís in the 79th minute, but a handball in the box a minute later lead to Monsiváis converting for her second of the evening. Monsiváis got her third in the 84th, heading a cross from Solís in past a diving Paz. Monterrey remains the only perfect team, winning all eight of their games so far this season.

Sub 17 results

Week 7

Puebla F.C. 0, UNAM Pumas 2

Atlas 1, Tigres UANL 1

Guadalajara 0, Mazatlán FC 0

León 2, Santos Laguna 1

América 2, Necaxa 0

Pachuca 1, Gallos Blancos de Querétaro 0

Club Tijuana 1, Monterrey 0

FC Juárez 0, Cruz Azul 1

Week 8

Tigres UANL 3, Guadalajara 1

Atlas 0, León 1

Necaxa 2, Gallos Blancos de Querétaro 0

Monterrey 4, Club Atlético de San Luis 0

Mazatlán FC 1, Santos Laguna 0

Pachuca 2, FC Juárez 2

Cruz Azul 1, Puebla F.C. 2

América 4, Toluca 1

Notes and other things

There’s been a lot that has happened since the last column, and it’d be a fool’s errand to not only try and catch everyone up on everything in the women’s soccer space but to also pretend that there isn’t much more important things happening in the world right now. Things are dark and sometimes bleak, but as long as we’re all here we are in it together. Check in on your friends and neighbors, and take care of your mental health.

Next week (all records are in W-D-L format, all times as listed):

Friday, March 4:

Mazatlán FC (1-2-5) vs. Necaxa (2-3-3) - 8:00 PM - TVP (Mexico)

Saturday, March 5:

UNAM Pumas U17(3-2-2) vs. Necaxa U17 (1-3-3) - 10:00 AM

Atlas (2-4-2) vs. Club Tijuana (1-6-1) - 12:00 PM - TVC Deportes (Mexico)

UNAM Pumas (2-2-4) vs. Pachuca (5-1-2) - 12:00 PM - TUDN (United States and Mexico)

Toluca U17 (5-0-2) vs. Pachuca U17(2-4-1) - 12:00 PM

Puebla F.C. U17 (3-1-3) vs. FC Juárez U17 (1-3-3) - 3:45 PM

León U17 (4-0-3) vs. Mazatlán FC U17 (3-1-3) - 3:45 PM

Santos Laguna U17 (4-0-3) vs. Club Tijuana U17 (4-1-2) - 3:45 PM

Sunday, March 6:

Club Atlético de San Luis U17 (2-0-5) vs. Tigres UANL U17 (2-2-3) - 10:00 AM

Cruz Azul U17 (2-1-4) vs. América U17 (5-2-0) - 11:00 AM

Guadalajara U17 (3-1-3) vs. Atlas U17 (5-1-1) - 3:45 PM

Club Atlético de San Luis (1-5-2) vs. Puebla F.C. (2-1-5) - 5:00 PM - ESPN (Mexico)

Monday, March 7:

Toluca (2-2-4) vs. Cruz Azul (2-3-3) - 5:00 PM - TUDN (Mexico)

Guadalajara (5-3-0) vs. FC Juárez (1-0-7) - 7:00 PM - FOX Sports (Mexico), Telemundo Deportes App, Chivas TV

León (2-2-4) vs. Monterrey (8-0-0) - 7:00 PM

Tigres UANL (6-2-0) vs. Gallos Blancos de Querétaro (3-2-3) - 7:00 PM - TUDN (Mexico)

Santos Laguna (1-1-6) vs. América (6-1-1) - 9:00 PM - FOX Sports (Mexico)