Mike Unwin (15) lifts Maksym Kowal in celebration, after Kowal's goal gave the Menace an early lead on Friday. Photo credit: Pat Ward, Jolesch Photography
WEST DES MOINES, Iowa – Friday, May 4, 2012 – On the first night of Opening Weekend, the Des Moines Menace struck early but couldn’t hold on, settling for a 1-1 Premier Development League tie with the Real Colorado Foxes.
The Heartland Division foes tied for the fourth-straight time, and they will meet again tomorrow night for another 7:30 kickoff at Valley Stadium.
Maksym Kowal spotted the Menace a lead in the sixth minute, when he found himself behind the Real Colorado defense. The midfielder from the University of Buffalo chipped the ball over the head of goalkeeper Miguel Rosales.
“I thought we were in great shape at that point,” said Kowal. “Then play got sloppy. We need to find the flow of the game and more goals will come.”
Unfortunately, they did not on this night, and the Foxes answered in the 67th minute. Julian Donaldson, the team’s leading scorer from a year ago, seared a free kick from 20 yards out, freezing Menace goalie Xavier Audergon.
“I thought it was a fair result, given the way both teams played,” said Menace head coach Laurie Calloway. “It looked like a group of guys who haven’t played together.”
Midway through the second half, play took a turn for the worse. The game opened up, and the yellow cards started flying, with each team receiving four cautions – all coming after halftime.
“It’s a work in progress,” Calloway said. “Guys are battling for spots. Part of tonight was this is a chance to start making some decisions on who to keep and who to cut. It was a valuable exercise from that standpoint.”
Calloway will have Jubril Lawal back in his lineup tomorrow. The Menace’s third-year defender from Nigeria had to sit out tonight, serving a suspension from a red card he received in the PDL playoffs last year.
“I think we’ll get a lot more energy from Lawal, and see if the guys can kick it up a notch,” Calloway said.
This was the teams’ first matchup since they battled to three ties in an eight-day span in June 2010. They didn’t face each other last season, and the Menace (12-4-0) barely edged the 11-2-3 Foxes for the division’s second and final postseason spot.
Des Moines and Real Colorado are the Heartland Division’s representatives in the 2012 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup. The Menace’s first-round match is on the road, against the Milwaukee Bavarians on May 15.
MR. B MAN of the MATCH goes to: Maksym Kowal, who scored the Menace’s first goal of 2012. The score was assisted by former college teammate Mike Unwin.
UP NEXT: Tomorrow’s match is presented by Taylor Industries. The Menace plays at Springfield (Mo.) on Wednesday, returning for another Saturday-night home match on May 12, against St. Louis.
Match: Des Moines Menace vs. Real Colorado Foxes
Date: Friday, May 4, 2012
Competition: Premier Development League regular-season match
Venue: Valley Stadium in West Des Moines, Iowa
Kickoff: 7:30 p.m. CDT
Weather: 80s and clear
Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
MENACE 1 0 1
RC 0 1 1
MENACE – Maksym Kowal (Mike Unwin) 6:00
RC – Julian Donaldson 67:00
Stats Summary: MENACE / RC
Shots: 7 / 6
Saves: 0 / 3
Corner Kicks: 1 / 4
Fouls: 12 / 13
Offside: 2 / 2
Misconduct Summary: Menace Yellow Cards: Brandon Beresford 50:00; Mike Unwin 67:00; Javi Lopez 80:00; Risto Laetti 90:00 RC Yellow Cards: Sterling Copeland 60:00; Patrick Freeman 63:00; Santiago Velez 72:00; Clayton Zelin 90:00
Des Moines Menace 2012 PDL Schedule
Friday, May 4 Real Colorado Foxes T, 1-1
Saturday, May 5 Real Colorado Foxes 7:30 p.m. at Valley Stadium
Wednesday, May 9 at Springfield Demize 7 p.m. at Cooper Complex
Saturday, May 12 St. Louis Lions 7:30 p.m. at Valley Stadium
Tuesday, May 15 Milwaukee Bavarians ^ 7 p.m. at Bavarian Soccer Park
Friday, May 19 Kansas City Brass 7:30 p.m. at Valley Stadium
Saturday, May 26 at St. Louis Lions 5 p.m. at Tony Glavin Complex
Friday, June 1 at WSA Winnipeg 7 p.m. at Winnipeg Soccer Complex
Saturday, June 2 at WSA Winnipeg 7 p.m. at Winnipeg Soccer Complex
Saturday, June 9 Kansas City Brass 7:30 p.m. at Valley Stadium
Thursday, June 14 at Springfield Demize 7 p.m. at Cooper Complex
Saturday, June 16 Colorado Select # 7:30 p.m. at Valley Stadium
Friday, June 22 at Thunder Bay Chill 6:30 p.m. at Chapples Park
Saturday, June 23 at Thunder Bay Chill 6:30 p.m. at Chapples Park
Saturday, June 30 Springfield Demize 7:30 p.m. at Valley Stadium
Friday, July 6 Thunder Bay Chill 7:30 p.m. at Valley Stadium
Saturday, July 7 Thunder Bay Chill 7:30 p.m. at Valley Stadium
Saturday, July 14 Minnesota Stars FC # 7:30 p.m. at Valley Stadium
Sunday, July 15 at St. Louis Lions 5 p.m. at Tony Glavin Complex
^ = first round of Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup
# = exhibition
All times are Central
ABOUT THE MENACE: The Des Moines Menace provides the highest level of soccer in Iowa. The Menace men’s side competes in the 73-team United Soccer Leagues Premier Development League (PDL). The Menace’s women’s team prepares for its inaugural season, as part of the six-team Women’s League Soccer. The Menace teams play their 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, Junior Menace and tournaments.
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