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Event Spotlight:
KiXX Top San Diego 12-4 to Remain Undefeated at Home

Sunday, December 1, 2002

By David W. Unkle
SJSports Staff Writer

Led by defenseman Drew Kopp (2G, 5 P) and strong goaltending by Peter Pappas, the Philadelphia KiXX maintained their undefeated record at home as the topped visiting San Diego in front of 3,752 fans at the First Union Spectrum. Playing for the first time in ten days (the KiXX defeated these same San Diego Sockers 10-5 on November 20), the KiXX drew first blood and never surrendered the lead in a game that was closer than the final score would indicate.

Goran Vasic put Philadelphia on top 2-0 on a re-start goal following a nice fake by Pat Morris, beating Sockers goalie (and MISL Defensive Player of the Week) Dezso Horvath high to the far side of the San Diego goal. A few minutes later, a header by Kevin Sloan almost put Philadelphia up by four if not for a great save by Horvath.

A costly turnover by Kopp knotted the score late in the first period. The turnover in front of the Philadelphia goal left Pappas defenseless on Alejandro Cadenas’ shot from point blank range.

San Diego continued to apply pressure throughout the period but Pappas held string until Kopp redeemed for his earlier miscue with consecutive goals putting Philadelphia up 7-2. Overall I don’t think I played that well but I got some lucky bounces said Kopp after his the first, two-goal game of his career.

Kopp’s first goal followed a high shot on the San Diego goal and deflected off defender Gaston Pernia, who inadvertently pushed the ball into his own goal for the 4-2 lead. Kopp followed that on a three-pointer that banked off Horvath and squeezed through the near side post for the five-point third quarter lead.

San Diego’s Shawn Beyer made the score 9-4 in the fourth before Kevin Sloan’s 3 point, empty-net goal with 71 seconds to go to close out the scoring. Kevin Sloan extended his point and goal-scoring streak to five games accumulating 19 points over that span.

The stifling Philadelphia defense held their opponents to five points or less in four of their last six games. In that stretch, the KiXX are 5-1. That’s the key to us…if we hold teams under ten points we’re going to win the game, added Kopp. We looked a little rusty out there tonight; it wasn’t our best overall game but we gritted through it and ended up on top.

We got a good result but it wasn’t a nice game…it was probably our worst game of the year as far as knocking the ball around, added D’Ambra. You look at the stats (and the highlight [clips from the game] and I guess it wasn’t as bad as it looked…but [as the Coach] I am looking at the things that we’re working on and we’re still not executing and overall we’re all disappointed in the game…it easily could have gone the over way.

On Saturday, December 7, the KiXX conclude their four-game home stand, as they welcome Eastern Conference opponent, the Baltimore Blast to the First Union Spectrum. The contest is a special salute to all America’s Heroes, including police officers, firefighters, emergency medical technicians, armed services, and veterans. All groups will receive a special discount by contacting the KiXX Ticket Office. Kick-off is set for 7:05 pm.

For ticket information, visit the Kixx website at: or call at the KiXX office at 1-888-888-KiXX. Family Packs (4 seats, 4 hot dogs, 4 sodas) are available for just $59.00.

Be sure to tune in to Inside the KiXX on The Topcat Sports Show Sundays 4:30-5:30 PM and Tuesdays 4:30-6:00 PM on Philadelphia's Renaissance Radio Station, WNJC1360-AM for your chance to win tickets to an upcoming Philadelphia KiXX game. The studio phone lines are 856.227.1360 and 856.232.7077.

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