Sunday, January 28, 2007
By Tom Hushen
Philadelphia, PA - The Philadelphia KiXX (10-5) defeated the Detroit Ignition (11-8) in a rematch from last Saturday's first place battle. On January 20, the KiXX beat the Ignition in an 8-6 thriller that saw Edgar Bartolomeu give Philly the victory with just 10 seconds left. Not to be outdone, Dino Delevski buried a three-pointer with just 45 seconds left to put the KiXX in sole possession of first place, 8-6. The KiXX have already matched their win total from last season, in exactly half the amount of games played.
The MISL's best road team (6-1) struck first on a goal from Dave Castellanos, his fourth of the season to put the KiXX up 2-0 just 3:48 into the opening frame. Andy Guastaferro was credited with the helper.
With just over a minute left in the first quarter, player-coach Don D'Ambra put the KiXX up 4-0 with his team-leading 15th goal of the season, the helper from Dino Delevski. D'Ambra picked up right where he left off, after having an 11-game point streak snapped the previous night at the hands of the Chicago Storm. Philly is now 10-2 when D'Ambra records at least one point.
Defender Matt Johnson put the Ignition on the board with his second goal of the season, assisted by Mauricio Salles. Steve Wacker responded for the KiXX with the first goal of his two-year career, putting Philadelphia up 6-2. The helper came from Ptah Myers. Wacker, a four year starter and captain at Temple University, was signed as discovery player in 2005. A knee injury has limited Wacker to just five games this season.
Detroit began the second half with Carlos Farias' 13th goal to bring the Ignition to within two, 6-4. The assist came from former KiXX player Josh Rife. Mike Apple's 10th goal of the season with 3:23 left in the third quarter from Novi tied the game at six apiece.
Rookie Mauricio Salles broke the tie in the fourth quarter with his second goal of the season, assist from Nate Craft. Detroit led 8-6 with two minutes remaining when Philadelphia replaced keeper Peter Pappas with 6th Attacker and reigning Defender-of-the-Week Pat Morris. The gamble would pay huge dividends as Morris set up Dino Delevski's seventh goal of the season, a three-pointer with just 45 seconds left. The KiXX held on to win their tenth of the season.
KiXX keeper Peter Pappas stopped 17-21 shots, improving to 10-5.
Philadelphia’s defense blocked a season high 19 shots, led by Genoni Martinez’s four-block performance. Ignition keeper Sanaldo stopped 13-17 shots, dropping to 8-7 on the season. Ignition forward and MISL leading scorer Jamar Beasley was held scoreless on nine shots. Both clubs went 0-1 on the power play.
Philadelphia split the weekend series, 1-1, following a January 27 loss to Chicago. The win is the third of four against Detroit this season. In four matches between the two clubs this season, we have seen the Ignition win in overtime, the KiXX win in overtime, the KiXX win with 10 seconds left, and the KiXX win with 45 seconds left. The remaining two games in this season series between the clubs have the potential to be instant classics. Philadelphia will visit Detroit once more on February 25 before the Ignition come to the Wachovia Spectrum on the last day of the regular season, March 31, in what could be a fight for the top seed in the playoffs.
First Quarter - Scoring: 2, PHI, Castellanos (Guastaferro) 3:48
Second Quarter - Scoring: 4, PHI, D’Ambra (Delevski) 1:35. 2, DET, Johnson (Salles) 4:42. 6, PHI, Wacker (Myers) 10:59.
Third Quarter - Scoring: 4, DET, Farias (Rife) 2:15. 6, DET, Apple (Novi) 11:37.
Fourth Quarter - Scoring: 8, DET, Salles (Craft) 7:26. 9, PHI, Delevski (Morris) 14:15.
The KiXX return to Philadelphia February 3 to take on the Baltimore Blast. Game time is set for 7:05pm ET with the first 2,500 fans receiving a KiXX hat courtesy of NBC10.