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Examiner
  • Comets kick off season tonight

  • Moments after the Missouri Comets’ first practice Thursday morning at the Independence Events Center, coach Kim Roentved took a moment to look at the MISL team’s empty playing field.

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  • Moments after the Missouri Comets’ first practice Thursday morning at the Independence Events Center, coach Kim Roentved took a moment to look at the MISL team’s empty playing field.
    “I haven’t slept for two or three nights,” said Roentved, whose Comets take on rival Wichita at 7:35 p.m. tonight at the Events Center in the opening game for both teams.
    “I’m not nervous, we have as much talent as we have ever had on this team, I’m just anxious. I want to see the boys out on the field. It seems like we’ve been practicing forever and we’re all ready to get the season under way.”
    For the third year in a row the Comets are kicking off the MISL season with a home-and-home weekend series against the Wings. After tonight’s game, the Comets and Wings travel to Wichita for a 3:05 p.m. Sunday game at Hartman Arena.
    “Talent can be misinterpreted,” Roentved continued. “You can have talent, but in this game, you must have talent and skill. And I believe we have talent and skill. We have all six defenders back from last season, we will have some changes at the midfield and we are solid at the forward positions.
    “And we are so strong in the goal with Danny (Waltman, a finalist for the league MVP last season) and Boris (Pardo). Boris is much improved and what can you say about Danny that hasn’t been said? Danny is Danny.”
    The Comets and Wings faced each other six times last season. The two teams are once again playing for the Turnpike Trophy, sponsored by the tourism departments of Independence and Park City, Kan. The Comets own the trophy by winning the 2011 head-to-head series four games to two.
    The Wings will have a familiar look to Comets fans as 2011 MISL MVP and former Comet standout Geison and Tiguinho will play in Wichita this season.
    It was a busy offseason for Roentved and the Comets. A summer trip back home for Roentved led to the signing of two Danish forwards, Kevin Jorgensen and Mads Falck. Both players have extensive experience at the highest levels of European and international futsal and are excited to bring their skills to the MISL.
    “It is a little different than Futsal, but Danny (Waltman), Brian (Harris) and the rest of the guys have really helped us to get adjusted,” Jorgensen said. “We’re really looking forward to playing in front of the home fans. They have already been very supportive and encouraging to us.”
    Waltman, who has emerged as the face of the Comets, can’t wait to play in front of the hometown fans.
    “I tested the free-agent waters in the offseason,” Waltman said, “and when I looked at other teams, I found out that this is the only place I want to play. We have the best arena, the best fans, the best coaches – we’ve come so close the past three seasons and we all think this could be the year we get to the championship game.
    Page 2 of 2 - “And there’s no place I’d rather be than here in Independence, to share that with our fans.”
    Tickets in all price ranges are available for tonight’s game. Call 855-KC-ARENA (522-7362) for more information.
     
     

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