COMETS LOOK TO TAKE CARE OF BUSINESS IN FLORIDA
The Kansas City Comets are flying south for the weekend to sunny Florida. This is no vacation though as they are set to battle against the Orlando SeaWolves on Friday and the Florida Tropics on Saturday. Both games are vital in the Comets’ aim for the final playoff spot in the South Central division of the MASL.
This might feel a little like déjà vu, as the Comets made this same trip two weeks ago on March 16 and 17. The Comets split their weekend series, picking up a win against the Orlando SeaWolves before dropping a loss against the Florida Tropics.
With last week’s 11-7 win over the St. Louis Ambush and results from the other teams in the South Central Division, the Comets (now at 11-10) hold a two-game advantage over St. Louis and two and a half over Orlando for the final playoff spot. Orlando is 8-12 and sits in fourth place of the division. Florida is 6-15 and is eliminated from the playoff race.
Heading into the weekend, the Comets have a magic number of one, meaning the next Kansas City win or Orlando loss will result in a playoff berth for KC.
Bolstering Kansas City’s confidence this weekend is the news that Kevin Ellis will be available for selection in both games this weekend. Originally given a red card following the game last week against St. Louis, his punishment was reduced to an undisclosed fine after review and appeal. Forward Stefan Stokic was also fined after the review.
The Comets will draw on their power play specialty to aid their quest for victory in both games this weekend. The team is first in the league in power play percent, at .667 percent. James Togbah is critical to this stat as he leads the league in power play goals with eight. He currently has a six game goal-scoring streak and a nine-game point streak.
Speaking of streaks, Leo Gibson is still riding a seven game scoring streak that started on February 24. Gibson, the team’s leading scorer, has racked up 32 goals and 28 assists this season.
Comets’ goalkeeper, Mark Saxby is at a .599 save percentage and has lead the Comets to six victories this season. Saxby also holds an impressive 7.47 goals against average for the 2018-2019 season.
Saxby is no stranger to the competition he and the rest of the team are facing this weekend. Gordy Gurson (29 goals and 20 assists) and Osvaldo Rojas (21 goals and 8 assists) will be on the move for Orlando. Victor Parreiras (15 goals 13 assists) and Ricardo De Queiroz Diegues (22 goals and 4 assists) will attempt to lead the Tropics to a win.
Hugo Silva, Tropic’s goalkeeper, is 10th in the MASL with his .653 save percentage. Last game against the Comets, he totaled 12 saves against 20 shots.
Although the SeaWolves utilize both of their rostered goalkeepers throughout the season, Kansas City has faced Piotr Sliwa in the previous match-ups. Sliwa maintains a .550 save percentage this year. It is possible that the Comets could face Rainer Hauss, who has accumulated .725 save percent in his 13 games played.
The Orlando SeaWolves will be the first to take on the Comets on Friday, March 29 at 6:35 pm CT. The next day, Kansas City will face the Florida Tropics at 6:05 pm on Saturday. Catch both games on MASL.tv and 38 the Spot as the Comets search for wins and the final playoff spot.