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Menace rolls into season's last week

The Menace is heading into a large week, with a playoff spot and a division crown up for grabs.
 
 

WEST DES MOINES, Iowa – Monday, July 13, 2015 – Controlling its postseason destiny and riding a wave of momentum, the Des Moines Menace has a clear path to its goals.

 

In the final week of the Premier Development League regular-season, the red-hot Menace needs one more victory to guarantee a return to the playoffs, and two more wins to repeat as Heartland Division champion. Des Moines (8-2-1, 25 points) plays at Springfield (Mo.) tomorrow and hosts Chicago on Friday and Saturday.

 
On a five-game winning streak, the Menace is in the driver’s seat. However, Thunder Bay (7-2-3) and Chicago (6-4-2) look to bump the Menace in this three-team race for the division’s two postseason berths.
 
This weekend’s doubleheader against Chicago Fire U23 at Valley Stadium looms large. First, though, the Menace needs to survive tomorrow’s bout with a much-improved Springfield side. In its season finale, the Synergy (5-5-3) eyes the franchise’s first winning campaign since joining the league in 2007.
 
Des Moines has already clinched this season’s Kum & Go Kup series against Springfield. The Menace hoisted the traveling trophy after a 3-1 home win over the Synergy on June 26. The teams battled to a scoreless draw at Valley Stadium on May 30, and the Menace escaped with a 1-0 win in Missouri on May 16. Since that season-opening loss, Springfield has claimed a perfect home record (5-0-0).
 

 
Des Moines Menace at Springfield Synergy
Date and Time: Tuesday, July 14 at 7:30 p.m.
Venue: Cooper Complex (turf) in Springfield, Mo.
Competition: Premier Development League regular season
 

ABOUT THE MENACE
-       8-2-1, first place in the Heartland Division.
-       Has won five straight since a 2-0 loss at Thunder Bay on June 19.
-       Unbeaten in its last 13 PDL home matches (since a 2-1 loss to Real Colorado on July 13, 2013).
-       Entered its 22nd season with an all-time PDL regular-season mark of 199-113-32.
-       The defending PDL regular-season champion (12-1-1).
-       Sharing the team lead with three goals each: Vince Cicciarelli, Mark Heath Preston, Chris Hellmann and Leigh Veidman.
-       Has allowed only seven goals, second in the PDL to only the Kitsap Pumas, who have conceded four goals.
-       Guided by first-year head coach Mike Matkovich, a former Major League Soccer coach who is assisted by Tony Jouaux and Jeremy Proud.
 
ABOUT THE SYNERGY
-       5-5-3, in fourth place in the Heartland Division.
-       On a five-match home winning streak since opening the season with a 1-0 loss to the Menace on May 16.
-       Has already secured the franchise’s best season (previously 5-7-4 in 2012).
-       Coming off a pair of two-goal home wins (3-1 over Thunder Bay on June 29 and 2-0 over St. Louis on July 2).
-       Alex Shackley and Phillip Woods share the team lead with six points each.
-       Led by first-year head coach Andrew Bordelon.
 
ALL-TIME SERIES
-       Des Moines leads the all-time series 18-2-2 (9-1-1 at home and 9-1-1 away).
-       This is the teams’ fourth meeting this season. Des Moines holds a 2-0-1 edge in 2015.
-       Mark Heath-Preston, a former Springfield player, notched the lone goal of the game against the Synergy on May 16.
-       The two foes tied 0-0 at Valley Stadium on May 30.
-       Javi Lopez, Shawn Claud Lawson and Mark Heath Preston scored in a 3-1 Menace win that clinched the Kum & Go Kup on June 26 at Valley Stadium.
-       Des Moines has outscored Springfield 39-4 at home and 8-4 on the road.
-       The Menace swept three meetings last year, securing the inaugural Kum & Go Kup.
 
KUM & GO KUP
-       This rivalry trophy debuted in 2014.
-       The winner is determined by points earned in the regular-season games between the Menace and the Demize. Tie-breakers: 1. Aggregate goals scored; 2. Away goals scored; 3. Previous year’s series winner (Menace in 2014).
-       Recognizes the communities’ support of Kum & Go’s success and growth.
-       The traveling trophy was generously provided by Custom Awards and Embroidery.
 
HEARTLAND DIVISION STANDINGS
Click here for all Premier Development League divisions
1.     Des Moines Menace (25 points in 11 games played; 8-2-1)
2.     Thunder Bay Chill (24 points in 12 games played; 7-2-3)
3.     Chicago Fire U23 (20 points in 12 games played; 6-4-2)
4.     Springfield Synergy (18 points in 13 games played; 5-5-3)
5.     St. Louis Lions (11 points in 14 games played; 4-8-2)
6.     WSA Winnipeg (2 points in 12 games played; 0-10-2)
 
PDL HONOR ROLL
-       Mark Heath Preston was named to the PDL Team of the Week on May 20.
-       C. Nortey received honorable mention on May 27.
-       Alec Bartlett received honorable mention on June 3.
-       Vince Cicciarelli and Leigh Veidman received honorable mention on June 17.
-       Brett Lane received honorable mention on June 24.
-       Fernando Machado was named to the PDL Team of the Week on July 1.
-       Leigh Veidman and Shawn Claud Lawson received honorable mention on July 1.
 
 RECAP FROM LAST SATURDAY
-       The Menace inched closer to the playoffs with a 4-1 come-from-behind win over the St. Louis Lions at Valley Stadium.
-       Ramone Howell equalized in the eighth minute. Leigh Veidman, who came on for an injured Howell, put the Menace up for good with a spectacular goal in first-half stoppage time.
-       Vince Cicciarelli padded the lead in the first minute of the second half, and Mark Heath Preston (who subbed for Cicciarelli) closed the scoring in the 83rd minute.
 
REMAINING HOME ACTION
-       The Menace wraps up the regular season this weekend with a pivotal Friday-Saturday doubleheader against Chicago Fire U23.
-       Friday is Fireworks Night and Saturday is Fan Appreciation Night, with both matches starting at 7:30.
 
 
 
ABOUT THE MENACE: The Des Moines Menace provides the highest level of soccer in Iowa. In its 22nd season, the Menace men’s side competes in the 63-team United Soccer Leagues Premier Development League (PDL). The Menace’s women’s team, in its fourth season, is part of the 80-team Women’s Premier Soccer League (WPSL). From May to July, 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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