|
|
Examiner
  • Comets suffer playoff frustration

  • The Milwaukee Wave scored 14 unanswered points in the second half Friday night at the Independence Events Center to claim a 27-10 victory over the Missouri Comets in the opening game of the playoffs.

    • email print
  • The Milwaukee Wave scored 14 unanswered points in the second half Friday night at the Independence Events Center to claim a 27-10 victory over the Missouri Comets in the opening game of the playoffs.
    The two teams head to Milwaukee for a 3:10 p.m. game Sunday. If the Comets win that game, the semifinals will be decided by a 15-minute mini-game immediately after Sunday’s regularly scheduled game.
    “I don’t know what I saw out there,” Comets coach Kim Roentved said after his team took an 8-7 lead into the locker room at halftime, only to see the defending league champions score 14 unanswered points in the second half.
    “We get the early lead and seemed like we forgot that there was a second half of soccer. It’s now do or die for the boys, and I know they don’t want the season to end Sunday in Milwaukee.
    “We can’t let this loss affect all the good things that happened the last six to eight weeks of the season.”
    Milwaukee seemed to manhandle and push the Comets around much of the first half, but Roentved said their physical play did not create the scoring opportunities in the second half.
    “If they were more physical and played harder than our boys it’s my fault, because I picked this team. If you play a physical team, you have to adjust to their style of play.
    “I just told the boys, ‘Whatever you ate for breakfast this morning, never eat it again.’”
    Defender Leo Gibson scored the game’s first two goals to give the Comets a quick 4-0 lead. The Comets took that 8-7 lead into the half when team captain Byron Alvarez scored on a penalty kick with four minutes left in the half.
    The second half was dominated by the Wave as Marco Terminisi scored on a shot that appeared to be headed out of the net by Missouri’s Christiano.
    The goal light went off, but there was a dispute about whether the goal should count.
    After a discussion with the goal judge – an addition during the playoffs – the goal was allowed.
    “I still question their go-ahead goal,” Roentved said. “Why make a change and put in a goal judge for the playoffs. I don’t understand it. It happened, and it didn’t matter that much after they scored all those other goals.”
    Gibson, whose sister and grandmother died this past week in Liberia, said the team will rebound in Milwaukee.
    “Milwaukee is going to be a war and we are ready to go to battle,” Gibson said. “We have time to regroup and forget about this and get ready to keep our season alive with a win in the regular game and a win in the mini game.
    Page 2 of 2 - “We have too much pride to have our fans remember this season for this loss. They deserve better and we’re going to do our best to give it to them.”
    Wave coach Keith Tozer said the team that won Friday night was different than the last time the two teams played in the regular season.
    “They beat us 21-6 here, but had played five games in seven days, the boys had no legs and we were missing some key players. I know they were missing some key players too, but I told our boys to forget that loss and go out and play hard tonight.
    “And I am sure Kim is telling his team the same thing. I have known Kim for 33 years, and he will have the Comets ready for the game Sunday.”
    The Wave dedicated the game to midfielder Tom Oatley, whose father died this week and was buried Wednesday.
    “I told Tom he didn’t need to play and he said his dad would have wanted him to play,” Tozer said, explaining the arm bands the Wave were wearing, in memory of Oatley’s father.
    “I get misty eyed every time I think of Tom and his commitment to this team. That’s why this sport is so special – you get to be around some wonderful young people.”
      • calendar