CHICAGO, Ill. – Tuesday, June 19, 2018 – The streak’s still going.
With a 2-1 victory tonight over Chicago FC United, the Des Moines Menace is still undefeated and untied. For at least one more day, the 8-0-0 Menace remains the Premier Development League’s lone remaining team with an untarnished record.
This was all in jeopardy in the second half against Chicago (5-2-0), a team that until last weekend also held a perfect record.
The Menace’s Nico Clasen, however, unlocked a 1-all tie in the 75th minute. His right-footed bomb from 25 yards out stands as the game-winner in round one between the Heartland Division’s (and, for now, the Central Conference’s) top two teams.
Kino Ryosuke’s league-leading ninth goal of the season put the Menace on top in the 42nd minute. Chicago drew even when Sven Koenig scored in the 63rd.
In tomorrow’s 7 p.m. rematch, back here on the Loyola University campus, Chicago looks to snap a two-game skid that started with another 2-1 result – Saturday in St. Louis.
Both of the Heartland Division frontrunners have already surpassed their win totals from last year. In 2017, the Menace (7-5-2) squeaked into the playoffs with a last-gasp, 2-0, season-closing home win over Chicago (4-5-5).
UP NEXT: The Menace wraps up its road schedule tomorrow, then it’s nothing but home games at Valley Stadium.
This coming Saturday kicks off a seven-game home stand: the Menace hosts Kaw Valley FC at 7:30 p.m., following the girls’ Iowa High School All-Star Game, which starts at 5 p.m.
MAN of the MATCH: Kino Ryosuke, for his PDL-best ninth goal and for assisting Clasen's first score of the season. Ryosuke, from Hyogo, Japan, is transferring from Marshalltown Community College to Louisville. At the midseason, he's in the race for the PDL MVP.
- Des Moines’ 8-0-0 start is the best in franchise history; the 2003 Menace started 6-0-0 before losing its seventh game and winning its eighth.
- The Menace has outscored opponents 20-3 – 7-0 in the first half and 13-3 in the secod half; Chicago has a 16-5 scoring advantage – 10-2 in the first half and 6-3 in the second half.
- This is only the second time the Menace has scored in both halves of a PDL match this season (see also a 4-1 win at St. Louis on May 26); Des Moines has yet to trail in league play.
- Going back to last season, the Menace is undefeated (8-0-1) in nine straight PDL road games (the last road loss coming June 10, 2017 – Thunder Bay 2, Menace 0).
- Menace ‘keeper Keegan Meyer improves to 6-0-0 this season.
- In the last 12 years, no Menace player has scored double-digit goals in a season, though tonight Kino Ryosuke joined “nine-goal club” members Tomas Boltnar (2007), Nicki Paterson (2007), Deshorn Brown (2011), Chris Hellmann (2014) and Leigh Veidman (2016).
Match: Des Moines Menace at Chicago FC United
Date: Tuesday, June 19, 2018
Competition: Premier Development League regular season
Venue: Hoyne Field (artificial turf) in Chicago, Ill.
Kickoff: 7 p.m CDT
Weather: 80s, sunny
Scoreline 1 2 F
MENACE 1 1 2
CHI 0 1 1
MENACE – Kino Ryosuke (Peter Pearson) 42
CHI – Sven Koenig 63
MENACE – Nico Clasen (Ryosuke) 75
CHI – Grant Stoneman (yellow card) 16
MENACE – Kino Ryosuke (yellow card) 77
MENACE – Audi Jepson (yellow card) 79