COMETS TOP AMBUSH 6-4 IN FINAL HOME GAME OF 2023
INDEPENDENCE, MO. – The Comets (5-1-0) used some timely goalkeeping from Nicolau Neto and a hat trick from John Sosa to top the St. Louis Ambush (1-4-1) 6-4 in front of 5,313 fans at Cable Dahmer Arena Thursday night.
The teams combined to get all of the first-quarter scoring done in less than the first 90 beginning with William Eskay who carried the ball across midfield and beat Comets keeper Neto with a low shot to the far post for his sixth goal of the season and a very early Ambush 1-0 lead just 21 seconds into the contest.
A minute later, Sosa sent a pass from the right end boards to Leonardo Acosta who was wide open at the top of the arc. Acosta sent a rocket past Paulo Nascimento to even the game at 1-1, a score that carried over to the second quarter.
The first of two special teams’ goals went Kansas City’s way courtesy of a blue card to James Togbah which set up a penalty kick for John Sosa. Nascimento dove in the correct direction but deflected the shot into the back of the goal to give the Comets a 2-1 lead with 10:12 remaining in the half.
The second was also set up by a St. Louis blue card, this time to Nascimento for handling. Backup keeper Jose Ogaz came off the bench to stop a shootout attempt by Zack Reget. Ultimately, the Ambush picked up their first short-handed goal of the season when William Eskay connected with Wil Nyamsi to level the game again, this time at 2-2 with 4:42 to play.
The Comets took a 3-2 lead to the locker room on Acosta’s second goal of the night. He drove to his right past two Ambush defenders and let loose a shot that deflected off a defender and past Nascimento.
As in the first half, St. Louis opened scoring in the second, this time with Kristo getting the goal with an assist to Togbah. The goal was Kristo’s 7th of the season and knotted the score at 3-3 with 11:27 to go in the third quarter.
Sosa was in the right spot at the right time when he intercepted a pass deep in the Ambush defensive zone and notched his second goal of the game to give Kansas City a 4-3 lead with 7:47 to go in the quarter. The game moved to the final 15 minutes with the Comets still up by that margin.
The game’s first two-goal lead came on Zach Reget’s 11th of the season and was unassisted when he spun around a St. Louis defender for the marker to make it a 5-3 Kansas City lead with 9:56 left in regulation.
After the Ambush cut the lead back to one on William Eskay’s second goal of the game, Sosa notched his hat trick on a Nacho Flores assist to make it a 6-4 Kansas City lead with 4:48 left.
The Comets withstood great pressure by the Ambush to seal the Comets’ 5th win of the season.
This home-and-home series will now shift to St. Charles where the Comets and Ambush will close out 2023 with a New Year's Eve contest kicking off at 2:05 pm CST. Kansas City returns home on Saturday, January 6 when the Harrisburg Heat pay a visit. Game time is 6:05 pm and tickets are available at www.kccomets.com/tickets.
1st – STL W.Eskay (Kristo) 0:21; KC Acosta (Sosa) 1:21. Penalties – None.
2nd – KC Sosa (unassisted) 4:48 pk; STL Nyamsi (W.Eskay) 10:18 sh; KC Acosta (Sousa) 12:23. Penalties – STL Togbah (bc- tripping) 4:48; STL Nascimento (bc- handling) 8:26.
3rd – STL Kristo (Togbah) 3:35; KC Sosa (unassisted) 7:17. Penalties – STL Kristo (yc- dissent) 13:53.
4th – KC Reget (unassisted) 5:04; STL W.Eskay (unassisted) 7:41; KC Sosa (Flores) 4:47. Penalties – None.