Photo credit: Art Schramm Photography
DES MOINES, Iowa – Saturday, May 10, 2014 – Good bye, preseason. Hello, Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup.
In its final tune-up leading into the season, the Des Moines Menace grabbed a 3-0 exhibition win over Imperio tonight at Cownie Soccer Park. Next up: an Open Cup date this Wednesday (May 14) against the Real Colorado Foxes at Valley Stadium.
Daniel Dreier and Nico Wright spotted the Menace a 2-0 halftime lead, with goals in the 39th and 43rd minutes. Sean Dong finished the scoring with a powerful strike in the 70th minute, when he volleyed in Brandon Fricke’s header.
The pieces are starting to come together for a Menace team that is welcoming new players into camp with each day.
“It’s still a work in progress,” Menace head coach Mike Jeffries said. “Tonight was a good opportunity to look at guys in a competitive game. It’s still early, and we’ve got a long way to go.”
A year ago, Wright and Fricke led the Menace to a third-round Open Cup matchup with eventual Major League Soccer champion Sporting Kansas City. They’re among 10 returners this year, joined by a promising crop of newcomers, including Dreier and Dong.
The first test in this year’s Open Cup is a second-round bout with a familiar foe from the Premier Development League. Real Colorado has kept the Menace from the PDL playoffs the last two years, but in 2014, the Foxes have moved from the Menace’s Heartland Division to the newly created Mountain Division.
“We know Colorado’s going to be good, and that they’re going to be ready to play. It will be a tough matchup for us,” Jeffries said. “The guys are looking forward to it.”
Jeffries called tonight’s exhibition a “combative local game.” Pride was on the line for Imperio, a team featuring seven Menace alumni. Suiting up for the defending Des Moines International League champs were Husref Jupic (2010-2013 Menace), Joe Klosterman (2006-2009), Armin Mujdzic (2002-2007; 2009-2010), Jack Pearson (2009, 2011), Kyle Reilly (1997-2000) and Tucker Sindlinger (2006-2009).
UP NEXT: The Menace opens the season with two games this week. On Wednesday at 7:30 p.m., the Menace hosts Real Colorado at Valley Stadium, in the second round of the 101st annual Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup. On Saturday (May 17), the team starts the PDL season on the road, against the Springfield (Mo.) Demize. Kickoff is 7 p.m. at Cooper Complex.
Match: Imperio at Des Moines Menace
Date: Saturday, May 10, 2014
Venue: Cownie Soccer Park, Field 7 (grass) in Des Moines, Iowa
Kickoff: 7:30 p.m. CDT
Weather: 70s, clear skies
Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
MENACE 2 1 3
IMPERIO 0 0 0
MENACE – Daniel Dreier 39:00; Nico Wright (Mueng Sunday) 43:00; Sean Dong (Brandon Fricke) 70:00
ABOUT THE MENACE: The Des Moines Menace provides the highest level of soccer in Iowa. Entering its 21st season, the Menace men’s side competes in the 64-team United Soccer Leagues Premier Development League (PDL). The Menace’s women’s team played in the 2013 Women’s Premier Soccer League playoffs, after debuting as the Women’s League Soccer 2012 champions. 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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