by Pete Richmire

INDEPENDENCE, MO. –  The Comets (2-0-0), energized by a sold-out Cable Dahmer Arena, picked up their second win of the season with a 7-2 win over their in-state rival St. Louis Ambush (0-1-1). Ray Lee picked up two goals in the win, and Comets goalkeeper Nicolau Neto took a shutout into the fourth quarter and finished with 15 saves.

The lone goal of the opening quarter came just after the midpoint with Rian Marques low on the left side with a defender marking him closely. He right-footed a quick pass off the end boards to a wide-open Ramone Palmer who beat Ambush keeper Paulo Nascimento for his first goal of the season and a 1-0 Comets lead with 7:05 to go in the first quarter.

The second quarter had no shortage of scoring. Kansas City found the back of the net the times in just over two minutes to open the frame. Zach Reget fired a rocket top-shelf from the left side to put the Comets up 2-0 with 13:56 to go in the half. 38 seconds later, Lee sent home his second of the year on a deflection off an Ambush defender and it was 3-0 very quickly. 

The third goal of the quarter took another 36 seconds, and it was the first of the season for Christian Anderaos on a Chad Vandegriffe assist, his first point with the Comets making it 4-0 with 12:42 still left to go in the second.

Midway through the quarter, the action lived up to the I-70 rivalry as things got a bit chippy by the benches though no penalties were called and the game continued until 44 seconds to go when John Sosa rocketed a shot from just inside the top of the arc to make it a 5-0 Kansas City advantage at the break.

On a penalty kick with 1:52 to play in the third, Rian Marques became the sixth different Kansas City player to score. His goal came courtesy of a challenge by Comets’ head coach Stefan Stokic which sent St. Louis’ Richard Schmermund to the penalty box for handling. With the goal, Kansas City took a 6-0 lead into the final quarter. 

Lee’s second goal of the game may have been the easiest of his career as he gained possession of the ball with Nascimento near midfield and found the vacated goal for the 7-0 lead with 11:33 to go in regulation.

St. Louis spoiled the clean sheet for Neto on back-to-back goals by former Comet Mike Da-Silva and Billy Stimac, both with their first goals of the season to reach the 7-2 final score.

Stokic wanted to see that shutout and spoke about it after the game. He said, “I wanted it so bad. I’m proud of a great win, but I’m mad that we didn’t get it. The boys should be mad as well, but that shows that we still have plenty to work on.”

Next up for the Comets is a trip to Harrisburg on December 9 and Texas on the 19th before returning home to face the Outlaws on Sunday, December 17 at 5:05 pm. Tickets are available at


1st – KC Ra. Palmer -1 (Marques) 7:55. Penalties – None.

2nd – KC Reget -4 (Flores) 1:04; KC Lee -2 (Sosa) 1:42; KC Anderaos -1 (Vandegriffe) 2:18; KC Sosa -2 (Marques) 14:16. Penalties – None.

3rd – KC Marques (unassisted) 10:09 pk. Penalties – STL Kirby (yc – illegal injured player return) 9:48; STL Schmermund (bc – handling) 13:09.

4th – STL Da-Silva -1 (Almeida) 5:04; STL Stimac -1 (W. Eskay) 7:15. Penalties – STL Schmermund (bc – contact above the shoulder/elbow) 7:54.

Power Play – Comets 1/2, St. Louis 0/0

Penalty Minutes – Comets 0, St. Louis 9

Fouls – Comets 18, St. Louis 18

Shots – Comets 40, St. Louis 33

Attendance – 6,159