Sunday, January 30, 2005
By David Deal
The Philadelphia KiXX (13-8) defeated the St. Louis (13-9) by a score of 7-3 in front of 5,534 fans at the Wachovia Spectrum tonight. With the victory, Philadelphia reclaims the top spot in the Major Indoor Soccer League (MISL) standings, holding a one-half game advantage over the Steamers. Peter Pappas (11-7) earned the victory between the posts for the KiXX, turning away 22 of the 25 shots he faced, while Brett Phillips (9-7) took the loss for St. Louis with nine saves on 16 chances.
Philadelphia started strong, registering four answered goals in the opening quarter to mark the team’s highest output in the first period of action this season. Defender Drew Kopp opened the scoring, blasting home a rebound off the boards at 1:34 of the opening quarter. Player/Coach Don D’Ambra then found the back of the net on a dish from teammate Pat Morris at the four-minute mark of the period, followed by a score from player/assistant coach Kevin Sloan on a pass from KiXX newcomer Daniel Antoniuk at 6:17. Sloan concluded the first quarter, finishing nice pass from teammate Ptah Myers at 10:44.
The KiXX continued to roll in the second period, as Sloan completed the hat trick with his third goal of the evening on a feed from Morris at 2:36 of the quarter. St. Louis’s Mariano Bollella finally snapped the team’s scoring drought, connecting on a pass from Ibrahim Kante at 8:46 of the stanza. Kante then registered an unassisted power-play goal (13:44) to pull the Steamers within three, 5-2, at the end of the half; St. Louis received the one-man advantage courtesy of two-minute penalty accessed to the KiXX bench for having too many men on the field.
Philadelphia rookie John Barry Nusum opened the second half with a notch from Pappas to reclaim the club’s four-point advantage, 6-2, at 5:34 of the third stanza. With the teams playing at four-v-four, Steamers forward Shaun David recorded a score on an assist from Bollella to pull St. Louis back within three, 6-3, at 9:47; both squads were forced to play a man down after KiXX rookie Gary Brooks and St. Louis midfielder Nate Houser were ejected and per the infraction, a member from each team serves a two-minute penalty.
Kopp connected on a nice feed from Nusum for his second tally of the contest at 2:25 of the fourth quarter to secure the Philadelphia victory, 7-3.
Notes: The first 3,000 fans, 14 and under, to enter the gates tonight received a Don D’Ambra Bobblehead Doll, courtesy of EwingCole. With two assists tonight, Philadelphia native Pat Morris extended his scoring streak to a season-high 12 games; his appearance also marked the 200th game of his six-year career. Forward Daniel Antoniuk recorded an assist, marking his first point as member of the KiXX; the Philadelphia native agreed to terms on January 28 and made his KiXX debut versus the Steamers on January 29.
Philadelphia: 4-1-1-1=7 Shots: 25
St. Louis: 0-2-1-0=3 Shots: 32
The KiXX return to action next Saturday, February 5 to entertain former player/coach Omid Namazi and the Cleveland Force. Game-time at the Wachovia Spectrum is slated for 7:05 pm ET, with the doors opening at 6:00 pm ET. For additional information or to purchase tickets, please contact the club’s Executive Office at 1-888-888-KiXX (5499) or visit www.kixxonline.com.