WEST DES MOINES, Iowa – July 15, 2010 – The Des Moines Menace has handled the Kansas City Brass twice this season and hopes to win the teams’ third matchup on Saturday at Valley Stadium. Kick-off for the Premier Development League game is set for 7:30 p.m.
The Menace defeated the Brass 2-1 at William Jewell College in Liberty, Mo. on May 19 and then 3-1 at Valley Stadium 10 days later.
Des Moines (5-3-6, 21 points) learned on Sunday it was eliminated from playoff contention. Rochester (Minn.) won on Saturday and Sunday to jump into second place of the Heartland Division with 27 points, which is the maximum number of points the Menace could obtain. The Thunder (8-2-3) has the tie-breaker against Des Moines, after winning the season series, 1-1-0. With Thunder Bay (10-1-1, 31 points) in first place, Rochester and Real Colorado (7-2-5, 26 points) continue to battle for the final postseason spot.
However, all is not lost for the Menace, as it can finish the season on a high note. With the team’s success against Kansas City (1-10-3, six points) and the Brass’ sixth-place position in the standings, anything but a win would be a setback.
The team also hosts rival St. Louis (5-7-3, 18 points) on July 24, looking to reward the Menace faithful with a win on Fan Appreciation Night.
“It’s extremely important (to end the season on a high note).” Menace head coach Laurie Calloway said. “We’ve missed out on the playoffs, which is a disappointment. Hopefully we can stem some of that disappointment with good performances against Kansas City and St. Louis and finish in third place.”
Des Moines has plenty of momentum after its best offensive showing of the season last Saturday. The team hung seven goals on the Minnesota Twinstars of the National Premier Soccer League in an exhibition win.
Calloway will use these last two games to prepare for next season. He said that some younger players will be thrust into the lineup so he can get a look at them. He also believes not making the playoffs should not affect his players’ effort.
“They’re (Menace players) playing for pride and the fans. They have to show they want to be back next year,” Calloway said. “It’s a meaningful game; we should have one of the biggest crowds of the year. They’re the entertainers.”
RECAPPING SATURDAY: Seven different Menace players recorded a goal and the Menace blasted the Minnesota Twinstars, 7-2, in an exhibition victory at Valley Stadium.
Des Moines got off to a hot start with a Stephen Okai goal in the fifth minute. Okai lifted a shot from about 40 yards away that was just out of the reach of the Minnesota keeper. Kenan Malicevic, Clark Bradford and Sterling Copeland also scored in the first half to give the Menace a 4-0 lead heading into the locker room.
Kyle Cumings, Husref Jupic and Adam Morris added second-half goals. Isaac Kannah and Adama Diawara scored for the Twinstars.
The Menace record for goal scorers in a PDL game is six, when the Menace defeated Springfield (Mo.), 8-0, on July 13, 2007. Because the game was an exhibition, statistics are not included in Menace record books.
SCOUTING KANSAS CITY: The Brass’ only win came in the season opener against Springfield on May 16, and Kansas City has been outscored by opponents 36-14.
The Menace trailed the Brass in both meetings this season, conceding first-half goals in both games. The team is 20-10-1 against Kansas City all-time.
These squads have battled every year since the Brass’ inaugural season in 1998. Their rivalry is the oldest among the current Heartland Division teams. Kansas City’s lone PDL playoff appearance also came in 1998.
Des Moines has enjoyed more success against the Brass at Valley Stadium. The Menace is 12-4-0 in the series at home and has not lost to Kansas City on its own turf since July 3, 2004. The last time the Brass won a game in the series was on May 16, 2007.
Troy Green leads the team with 11 points in ten appearances. The Brass is coached by Jefferson Roblee, who has a 53-77-18 record in his eighth season.
UPCOMING PROMOTIONS: Saturday is Susan G. Komen Night, presented by the Principal Financial Group. For every ticket sale, $2 will be donated to Susan G. Komen for the Cure to fight against breast cancer. All fans are encouraged to wear pink. Fine Designs will sell custom-made pink T-shirts for 25 percent off on game night.
The season finale on July 24 is Fan Appreciation Night. Help us “Paint the Stadium Red,” as all fans wearing a red shirt will receive $5 admission.