TIJUANA, BC.- Club Tijuana Xoloitzcuintles de Caliente returned to action Saturday since clinching its first Mexican League title in the First Division against Dorados de Sinaloa in an exhibition match.
The Xoloitzcuintles overcame a 3-0 deficit to finish the preseason with a 3-3 tie against visiting Dorados with three second half goals.
Bruno Piceno, Joshua Abrego and Edgar Villegas scored for the Xoloitzcuintles. All three goals came in a span of six minutes by three substitutes. Piceno scored in the 82nd minute to cut the Dorados’ lead to 3-1 while Abrego and Villegas both sent the ball into the net in the 88th minute, capping the comeback.
Club Tijuana’s three unanswered goals came after the team was shutout for 81 minutes by a Dorados team that is coming off a LIGA MX Copa MX title.
“This was an important game for me,” said Villegas, a Tijuana native. “I’m real happy I had the opportunity to score.”
Dorados took a 1-0 halftime lead after Gustavo Ramirez scored in the 29th minute to quiet a sold out Estadio Caliente on a rainy night. The rain continued steadily through the night as the Dorados extended its lead. Christian Lopez scored twice for the visiting team. His first came in the 50th minute. He scored again in the 78th minute.
The Xoloitzcuintles would answer four minutes later.
Club Tijuana is preparing for the upcoming 2013 Clausura tournament and the Copa Libertadores. Coach Antonio Mohamed’s squad kicks off the tournament in Puebla next Sunday before returning for its home opener Jan. 12 against Club Leon FC.
Dorados is preparing for their season in the Liga de Ascenso, Mexico’s Second Division.
The Xoloitzcuintles returned most of their starters from the championship run in the 2012 Apertura.
Piceno, Abrego and Villegas came into the game against Dorados in the second half after Mohamed opted to start 10 of its 11 regulars with Jorge Hernandez making the start in place of regular Edgar Castillo.
“We want to be able to put together a roster that can help us get through these upcoming tournaments,” Mohamed said. “We will see what can come out of it.”
VIDEO - FULL MATCH SUMMARY: