Mexico powers past Honduras at CU20

Victor Guzman (#6) scored in Mexico's CONCACAF Under-20 Championship win over Honduras on January 15, 2015, in Montego Bay, Jamaica. (Photo: Mexsport)

MONTEGO BAY – Alejandro Diaz and Hirving Lozano struck for first-half goals and Victor Guzman added a late insurance tally as 10-man Mexico moved one step closer to earning a place in the FIFA U-20 World Cup, beating Honduras 3-0 in the CONCACAF Under-20 Championship at the Montego Bay Sports Complex on Thursday.

The Mexicans, who were reduced a player following Oscar Bernal’s second-half ejection, improved to 3-0-0 and will finish the evening atop the Group B table regardless of the result between Cuba and Haiti later.

Diaz gave the Tricolor a 1-0 lead in the 15th minute, burying his third goal of the tournament with a well-taken penalty kick that had goalkeeper Roberto Lopez diving the wrong way.  Panamanian referee John Pitti pointed to the spot after Kevin Lopez tripped Jose David Ramirez inside the 18-yard box.

Lozano doubled the advantage with a spectacular individual effort in the 31st minute on a counterattack off a Honduran corner kick.  The Pachuca midfielder went on a 70-yard run down the right wing, cut inside a defender and finished from 20-yards out for his fourth goal of the competition.

Guzman closed out the win in the 89th minute by latching onto a loose ball at the top of the box and powered through the box before blasting home a shot off the near post.

After tempers flared in the 70th minute, Pitti showed Bernal a straight red card for kicking at Honduras’ Alberth Ellis.

 In the 84th minute, forward Junior Lacayo nearly got the Central Americans on the scoreboard, but his attempt went just wide to the right of diving goalkeeper Jose Luis Gonzalez.

Two minutes from full time, Rochez tapped in at the far post only to be ruled offside.

Both teams return to group play Monday at the Montego Sports Complex as Mexico meets El Salvador and Honduras faces Haiti.