COMETS AMBUSHED AT HOME FOR TOUGH LOSS
The Kansas City Comets fell 8-5 to the St. Louis Ambush tonight in Silverstein Eye Centers Arena. St. Louis defender Douglas Dos Santos led all scorers with 2 goals and 1 assist, while their keeper Paulo Nascimento tallied 23 saves.
Early in the first, each teams offense put up several close shots on goal, but the keepers defended the nets well. Comets keeper Brett Petricek and Ambush keeper Nascimento both made multiple impressive saves.
A bit over eight minutes into the first, Togbah crossed to Anthony Grant, who struck the ball high past the far post to give the Comets a 1-0 lead.
Shortly after, Dos Santos of was sent to the penalty box for a two-footed tackle, lending Kansas City a power play.
Despite the player advantage, the Comets could not seem to find a shot opportunity, and St. Louis successfully killed the penalty.
St. Louis found the net for the tying goal with under two minutes to go in the first. Dos Santos narrowly avoided Stefan Stokic and drove the ball out of reach of the diving Petricek.
Kansas City was put on the power play once more with 1:20 remaining in the quarter after a holding penalty was called on Axel Duarte.
The score remained tied 1-1 through the end of the quarter, as well as through Kansas City’s power play.
Three minutes into the second quarter, Alain Matingou passed to the wide open Kiel Williams at the corner of the goalkeeper box, who chipped the ball right around Nascimento as he approached.
Three minutes later, Williams was shown a blue card for tripping, and the Comets entered a penalty kill.
Kansas City played aggressively through the penalty kill, with two breakaway opportunities that nearly led to short handed goals.
Just as the Comets returned to full strength, the Ambush’s Stefan St. Louis collected the rebound from a save for a chipped a shot around Petricek. St. Louis took the lead shortly after JT Thomas found Justin Stinson for another goal.
As the scores of each team rose, the tensions between followed suit. James Togbah and Zach Reget were each given blue cards for unsportsmanlike conduct, leading to 2 minutes of 5 on 5 arena soccer.
The Comets answered with just 30 seconds left in the half, as Adam James fielded his own rebound from Lucas Rodriguez’s shot to sneak the ball underneath the reach of Nascimento.
After a hard fought first half, both the Ambush and Comets entered the locker room even at 3-3.
The half time break did not turn down the heat for either of the Midwestern rivals, as evidenced by an early blue card to Anthony Grant for boarding.
St. Louis took advantage of the power play and took the lead 4-3 with a goal by Reget, assisted by Maqui Souza.
The Ambush found the net again shortly after the Comets returned to full strength, when Mario Marcos found Dos Santos in the keeper’s box to take a 5-3 lead.
At the six minute mark of the third, a long pass from Stefan St. Louis lead to a shot into the top corner of the net from Robert Acosta to extend the Ambush lead to 6-3.
A restart for the Comets went awry and St. Louis capitalized with a breakaway and a goal from Pepe Junqueira, assisted by keeper Nascimento.
The Comets got a chance to change the tide when Acosta of the ambush was called for a reckless tackle. Kansas City took advantage quickly on the power play, with a goal from Lucas Rodriguez assisted by Leo Gibson.
The power play goal lit a spark of energy for Kansas City, each player attacking the ball relentlessly and showing intense physicality. The end of the third quarter came before they were able to score again, but their play sent a message of determination.
The Comets entered the fourth period on the attack, firing shot after shot at the goal and keeping the ball on St. Louis’s side of the turf.
Still down 7-4, Rodriguez donned the crimson sixth attacker jersey, but the extra attacker could not force the ball into the net. Many shots from Kansas City were deflected by the posts or crossbar, or by impressive saves from Nascimento.
The Ambush’s Reget notched an empty net goal on a breakaway, but the Comets answered quickly with a goal from Robert Palmer, assisted by John Sosa. The scoreboard read 8-5 entering the final minute of play.
Kansas City put up a few more hard shots, but were ultimately unable to further their comeback before the end of regulation.
Tonight’s loss knocks Kansas City down to third place in the MASL’s South Central division. The Comets now trail 3-1 in this season’s series against the Ambush, and their three-game winning streak has come to an end.
They will look for the start of their next streak on Sunday at 7:05 p.m. CT when they host Utica City FC.
MASL Match Report
Match: Kansas City Comets vs St. Louis Ambush
Date: January 18, 2019
Venue: SIlverstein Eye Centers Arena, Independence, MO
Kickoff: 7:35 p.m. CT / 8:35 p.m. ET
|Kansas City Comets|
|St. Louis Ambush|