Hat-trick hero Whitney Sharpe (left) and Danielle Puddefoot (right) combined to score five goals in this 8-1 win over in-state foe QC. Photo credit: Antonio Rodriguez
WEST DES MOINES, Iowa – Saturday, July 9, 2016 – Soccer is noticeably easier when the other team is playing with fewer people on the field.
The Quad City Eagles showed up with 10 players today, and the Des Moines Menace had its way in an 8-1 Women’s Premier Soccer League victory at Valley Stadium.
Whitney Sharpe’s hat trick and Danielle Puddefoot’s brace highlighted a dominant win that improves the Menace’s mark to 4-1-0 with a 20-5 scoring advantage in league matches.
Haley Helverson set the tone in the fifth minute, scoring on a rocket that splashed the net just below the cross-bar. The unrelenting Menace scored four more times before halftime, with Puddefoot and Sarah Brandt building the lead before Sharpe struck with back-to-back goals in the 35th and 36th minutes.
“We knew that once we got the first one, the goals would keep coming,” said Sharpe. “Our mindset was, ‘How many can we get to put is in a good position in the standings?’”
Second-half goals by Chelsea Cline and Puddefoot sandwiched Sharpe’s third goal of the day.
In the 87th minute, the Eagles (0-6-0) broke the shutout with a goal by Thalya Dwyer, who put away a rebound after Helverson hustled behind Menace goalkeeper Haley Morris to block Dwyer’s first shot.
Morris made a heroic save in the 15th minute. Quad City captain Tori Novak appeared to have an open net for an equalizer, but the Menace defense recovered, and Morris scrambled back to grab Novak’s low shot inches in front of the goal line.
This decisive Interstate-80 Derby result comes a week after the Menace’s 4-0 setback at WPSL reigning champ Chicago, which sits atop the Heartland Region with a 6-0-0 record and a sterling 30-0 goal differential.
Justin Vorster’s Menace will get another shot at Chicago next Saturday in an anticipated home match. First, though, the second-place Menace plays at Kansas City tomorrow in the team’s final road test of the season.
“We’re getting deeper,” Sharpe said. “It’s great to be surrounded by so many talented players, and it’s really exciting to see us moving in the right direction.”
The Menace’s 20 goals are the most for Des Moines in a WPSL season; the previous record was held by the 2014 Menace that outscored foes 19-16 in a 7-3-0 season.
Fifth-year Menace veteran Jordan Bishop saw her first action as a newlywed, two weeks after marrying Kyle McMahon.
Marissa Hurt – a former Iowa Hawkeye who was part of the 2014 Menace – played against her former team; Hurt’s younger sister, Kasey, is on the current Menace roster.
A year after earning the Menace’s Golden Boot with four goals, Danielle Puddefoot leads the team with five scores this season. In the team’s last home action, Puddefoot bagged a hat trick in an exhibition win that doesn’t count in the season statistics.
With three straight wins by a combined 18-2 difference, the Menace has gained a 4-2-0 edge in this in-state rivalry.
WOMAN of the MATCH: Whitney Sharpe for her hat trick. Playing on the home turf of her former high-school team, the West Des Moines Valley graduate is a fan favorite.
UP NEXT: The Menace travels tomorrow for a 4 p.m. match with the Kansas City Courage on the campus of Rockhurst University. Next weekend, the Menace hosts Chicago (Saturday at Valley Stadium) and Minnesota (Sunday at Grimes Sports Complex).
Match: Quad City Eagles at Des Moines Menace
Date: Saturday, July 9, 2016
Competition: Women’s Premier Soccer League regular season
Venue: Valley Stadium (turf) in West Des Moines, Iowa
Kickoff: 4:30 p.m. CDT
Weather: 80s – bright, bright, sun-shiny day
Scoring Summary: 1 2 F
MENACE 5 3 8
QC 0 1 1
MENACE: Haley Helverson 5:00; Danielle Puddefoot 24:00; Sarah Brandt (Nicole Pearson) 33:00; Whitney Sharpe 35:00; Sharpe (Jordan Bishop) 36:00; Chelsea Cline 66:00; Sharpe 84:00; Puddefoot 86:00
QC – Thalya Dwyer 87:00
ABOUT THE MENACE: The Des Moines Menace provides the highest level of soccer in Iowa. In its fifth season, the Menace women’s team is part of the Women’s Premier Soccer League (WPSL). The Menace men’s team competes in the Premier Development League (PDL) and is in its 23rd season. With loyal support, the Menace men’s and women’s teams play their home games at Valley Stadium in West Des Moines to provide family fun entertainment. The Menace organization provides the growth of the game of soccer in Iowa with their youth soccer programs including Junior Menace (ages 3-9), Menace Youth Academy (ages six and older), camps, clinics and tournaments.
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