Christian Castillo (left) celebrates his score, with (left to right) Javi Lopez, A.J. Jeffries and Jacob Speed. Photo credit: Art Schramm Photography
WEST DES MOINES, Iowa – Saturday, May 31, 2014 – In his debut with the Des Moines Menace, Christian Castillo boosted his new team to a 1-0 victory over the Minnesota United FC Reserves tonight at Valley Stadium.
Castillo scored in the 40th minute of this exhibition, played three nights after Minnesota United FC knocked the Menace out of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, by an identical scoreline on the same field.
Chris Hellmann and Jacob Speed created the scoring opportunity. Hellman delivered a corner service from the left side, and Speed flicked the ball a few feet to Castillo, who beat Minnesota goalkeeper Adam Acosta to get his heel on it.
“It was definitely a relief – something a forward needs to start the season,” said Castillo, whose last stop was with the Puerto Rico FC this spring in the professional Caribbean Football Union.
“The crowd makes it feel like home here,” Castillo said as he signed autographs for a line of children after the game. “It feels good to step on the field for the Menace.”
Less than two weeks ago, Castillo arrived from Silver Spring, Md., parting ways temporarily with his wife and their child. They’ll be back together soon, as Cecilia and eight-month-old Ily plan on coming to Des Moines this week.
“This match is dedicated to them,” Castillo said with a big grin. “Every match I play is dedicated to them.”
While Castillo shined on the offensive side, the unsung and un-stung Menace defense continued its steadfast play. In his Menace debut, goalie Tim Dobrowolski recorded the team’s fourth shutout in five outings, including a 2-0-0 start in Premier Development League play.
Des Moines jumps back into PDL action next Saturday, hosting the Heartland Division newcomer Chicago Inferno.
The Minnesota United FC Reserves (2-1-0) dive back into National Premier Soccer League play. And, in Atlanta tonight, their senior team (6-1-1) scored a 2-0 win over the Silverbacks. Minnesota United FC is in the driver’s seat for clinching first place in the pro North American Soccer League’s spring season, which wraps up next weekend.
MAN of the MATCH: Christian Castillo, who scored in his Menace debut. Castillo is a native of the Washington, D.C. area. He has played professionally in Bolivia and more recently in Puerto Rico.
UP NEXT: The Menace hosts the Chicago Inferno next Saturday (June 7) on Youth Soccer Night, presented by the Iowa Soccer Association. Youth-soccer and high-school players, coaches and referees receive free admission for a doubleheader that opens with a Women’s Premier Soccer League match between the Menace and the Minnesota TwinStars. All Menace PDL home matches start at 7:30 p.m.; all Menace WPSL home matches kick off at 4:30.
Match: Minnesota United FC Reserves at Des Moines Menace
Date: Saturday, May 31, 2014
Venue: Valley Stadium in West Des Moines, Iowa
Kickoff: 7:30 p.m. CDT
Weather: 80s, with some rain
Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
MENACE 1 0 1
MN 0 0 0
MENACE – Christian Castillo (Jacob Speed) 40:00
Stats Summary: MENACE / MN
Shots: 19 / 8
Saves: 4 / 7
Corner Kicks: 9 / 4
Fouls: 9 / 9
Offside: 1 / 0
Misconduct Summary: MENACE cautions: Deshawon Nembhard 69:00; Nembhard 76:00; Michael Semenza 80:00; MN caution: Christian Weaver 84:00
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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