Photo credit: Art Schramm Photography
WEST DES MOINES, Iowa – Saturday, July 26, 2014 – History repeated itself – just not in the way the Des Moines Menace had hoped.
The Michigan Bucks once again got the upper hand in a playoff battle between the Premier Development League’s most accomplished franchises. With a 2-0 victory tonight at Valley Stadium, the Bucks improved to 5-1 against the Menace in the postseason.
Entering tonight’s Central Conference Championship clash the Menace aspired to repeat the franchise’s only postseason win against the Bucks – a 4-1 triumph on the way to the 2005 PDL championship.
David Goldsmith dashed those dreams with a pair of early goals tonight. Capitalizing on two of his three chances, the Michigan midfielder tallied goals in the 14th and 23rd minutes.
“We weren’t sharp at the beginning tonight, and that ended up dictating the game,” said Menace head coach Mike Jeffries, whose squad claimed the PDL’s regular-season championship with a memorable 12-1-1 record.
Snapping the Menace’s 11-match unbeaten streak, the Bucks brought their undefeated stretch to seven matches, and they move on to the tournament’s semifinals for the first time since getting to the PDL title match in 2006 (champions) and 2007.
Michigan is the only PDL team to leave Valley Stadium with a win this season. During the regular season, the Menace went 6-0-1 at home, outscoring visitors 17-2.
“The boys were ready,” Michigan head coach Demir Muftari said of his team’s effort tonight. “We came out with a real edge – a real purpose.
“It’s a lot of fun when we play the Menace. Every time we get together, something’s on the line. Both teams have a rich history, and it’s a big deal for us. The Menace has great fan support, and we were excited to come here.”
The Bucks’ 17th playoff run continues, as the Menace’s 12th postseason appearance comes to a close. Des Moines bows out after reaching the PDL’s round of eight for the first time since 2009. Last night, in a thrilling shootout win over K-W United FC, the Menace tasted its first playoff success in five years.
Both of the Central Conference finalists played on tired legs. The Bucks needed overtime to tame the St. Louis Lions, 3-1, last night.
Des Moines joined the Bucks in elite company this season, becoming one of just three PDL franchises to win a pair of regular-season titles. The Menace (also in 2002), the Bucks (2008, 2012) and the Jackson Chargers (1998, 1999) hold this distinction.
“I’m proud of these guys,” Jeffries said of the 2014 Menace. “A great season. They showed a lot of heart, a lot of character. We all enjoyed working with each other. A great group of guys.”
MAN of the MATCH: Defender Alec Bartlett, for the second time this season. The Overland Park, Kan., native is a redshirt junior for Drake.
Match: Michigan Bucks at Des Moines Menace
Date: Saturday, July 26, 2014
Competition: Premier Development League Playoffs: Central Conference final
Venue: Valley Stadium (turf) in West Des Moines, Iowa
Weather: 80s, clear skies
Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
MENACE 0 0 0
MICH 2 0 2
MICH: David Goldsmith (Zach Steinberger) 14:00; Goldsmith 23:00
Misconduct Summary: MENACE cautions: Javi Lopez 71:00; Javi Lopez 90:00+ (ejection); MICH cautions: Mo Kaba 30:00; Brandon Beresford 56:00; Ken Tribbett 79:00
Stats Summary: MENACE / MICH
Shots: 10 / 9
Saves: 4 / 4
Corner Kicks: 1 / 3
Fouls: 8 / 10
Offside: 1 / 1
Des Moines Menace 2014 Final Results (12-1-1 PDL regular season)
Saturday, May 10 # Imperio W, 3-0
Wednesday, May 14 ^ Real Colorado Foxes W, 3-0
Saturday, May 17 at Springfield Demize W, 2-0
Sunday, May 25 at St. Louis Lions W, 2-0
Wednesday, May 28 ^ MN United FC (NASL) L, 0-1
Saturday, May 31 # MN United FC Reserves W, 1-0
Saturday, June 7 Chicago Inferno W, 3-0
Friday, June 13 at Thunder Bay Chill L, 1-3
Saturday, June 14 at Thunder Bay Chill W, 3-2
Saturday, June 21 Springfield Demize W, 4-0
Saturday, June 28 Thunder Bay Chill W, 1-0
Sunday, June 29 Thunder Bay Chill W, 2-1
Saturday, July 5 at WSA Winnipeg W, 2-0
Sunday, July 6 at WSA Winnipeg W, 3-0
Saturday, July 12 St. Louis Lions T, 1-1
Tuesday, July 15 at Springfield Demize W, 1-0
Friday, July 18 WSA Winnipeg W, 5-0
Saturday, July 19 WSA Winnipeg W, 2-0
Friday, July 25 ! K-W United FC W, 0(4)-0(3)
Saturday, July 26 ! Michigan Bucks L, 0-2
All game times are central
! = PDL Playoffs | ^ = Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup | # = Exhibition
ABOUT THE MENACE: The Des Moines Menace provides the highest level of soccer in Iowa. In 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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