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Brass plays spoiler, wins 2-1

Luis Piffer put the Menace up, connecting on a PK in the 29th minute. The Brass came back to win, 2-1, marking the first time since July 9, 2004 that Des Moines lost after leading at halftime.
LIBERTY, Mo.  – Wednesday, May 25, 2011 – Entering tonight’s Premier Development League match against Kansas City, the Des Moines Menace harbored hopes of sending two teams to the 2011 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup.

The home-team Brass put the kibosh on these plans, winning 2-1 tonight at William Jewell College and forcing the Menace to settle for one team in the Open Cup. Des Moines (3-1-0) needed a victory in its final qualifying match to clinch the PDL Heartland Division’s berth, which instead goes to Real Colorado (4-0-0).

“It’s disappointing,” said Menace head coach Laurie Calloway. “I think our guys were a little complacent. They’ve had three good wins and played pretty well. Tonight, though, there wasn’t the sharpness we’ve seen in the first three games.”

Still, the Menace organization sends one squad to the 2011 Open Cup. The Iowa Menace secured a spot on April 30, with a 7-1 win over Kansas to secure one of the United States Adult Soccer Association’s (USASA) eight bids. This marks the third time the organization has made back-to-back appearances (2002-2003 and 2005-2006) in the United States Soccer Federation’s prestigious national tournament.

“To be in the Open Cup is a big honor,” Calloway said. “It’s obviously an achievement to have one team in the Open Cup; we were just hoping to have two teams in it.”

Kansas City took the Menace out of its rhythm tonight, playing physically and overcoming a halftime deficit – the product of Luis Piffer’s successful penalty kick in the 29th minute, set up when teammate Lebogang Moloto was taken down in the box.

Despite playing a man down after a red card in the 45th minute, the Brass tied things on a corner kick in the 56th minute.

Des Moines lost the one-man advantage, and ultimately the match, in the 70th minute, when captain Coady Andrews, playing against his former team, received a red card that set up the winning penalty kick.

 “A frustrating way to lose this one,” Calloway said. “We gave the game to them. We’re the better team but we didn’t show them.”

The Menace won’t have to wait long for a rematch, as these teams face off next Wednesday (June 1) at Overland Park Soccer Complex.

This was only the second loss in the Menace’s last 24 road matches, and the first time since July 2004 that the team lost after leading at the half.

After snapping a nine-game winless streak against Des Moines, the Brass (2-2-0) has already won more games than it did a year ago (1-12-3).

Kansas City helped the Menace clinch the division’s Open Cup spot in 2010, by tying front-runner Rochester in its final qualifier. This time around, the Brass foiled the Menace’s plans and gave a hand to Real Colorado, helping the Foxes make their first visit to the Open Cup.

MR. B MAN of the MATCH goes to: Luis Piffer, who scored the Menace’s lone goal, and his first of the season. The Brazilian guided Grand View to the Elite Eight of the 2010 NAIA National Tournament and earned all-America status and Midwest Collegiate Conference Player of the Year honors.

UP NEXT: Des Moines is idle over the Memorial Day Weekend. The Menace and the Brass meet at Overland Park Soccer Complex next Wednesday (June 1).

The Menace is back at Valley Stadium on Saturday, June 4, hosting Des Moines International on Youth Soccer Night, presented by Powerade and Vitamin Water. All youth-soccer players and coaches receive free admission when they wear their team jerseys or show their coaches’ passes.

Match: Des Moines Menace at Kansas City Brass
Date: Wednesday, May 25, 2011
Competition: Premier Development League regular-season match
Venue: William Jewell College in Liberty, Mo.
Kickoff: 7:30 p.m. CDT
Weather: 60s with rainy and windy conditions

Scoring Summary:     1   2   F
MENACE                      1    0    1
KC                               0   2    2

MENACE – Luis Piffer PK 29:00
KC – 56:00; 70:00 PK
ABOUT THE MENACE: The Des Moines Menace competes in the 64-team United Soccer Leagues Premier Development League (PDL), the highest amateur level of soccer in North America. The Menace plays its home matches in a fun, family-friendly environment at Valley Stadium in West Des Moines. The organization promotes a healthy lifestyle through its popular youth programs, including the Menace Academy (select soccer for ages 9-19), camps, clinics and tournaments.

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