THUNDER BAY, Ontario – Friday, June 8, 2018 – Wins like this one don’t come very often on the Thunder Bay Chill’s home turf.
Running its perfect mark to 5-0-0, the Des Moines Menace busted open a scoreless halftime to score a 3-0 Premier Development League victory tonight at Fort William Stadium. This is the franchise’s most decisive win in Thunder Bay since 2002.
Brandon Fricke and Audi Jepson continued their scoring ways. They delivered the goods in the Menace’s previous outing, and they spotted their team a two-goal lead tonight. An own goal by Thunder Bay – created by Rashid Alarape – added to the damage in the final moments of second-half stoppage time.
This statement win sends the westbound Menace to Manitoba in high spirits. The team closes this Canadian jaunt with a Sunday-night match against winless WSA Winnipeg (0-8-0).
“It feels pretty good right now,” Fricke said. “We kept our organization and stuck to our game plan. We kept going at them. We knew we’d get some goals if we kept with it, and we got the win. Our work’s half-done. Now we shift our focus to Winnipeg and our goal of coming home with three more points.”
Like in last Saturday’s 2-0 win at St. Louis, Fricke headed in a goal assisted by a Nico Clasen set-piece. This time around, Clasen created the chance with a corner kick less than three minutes into the second half.
Jepson’s goal came in breakaway fashion. In the 67th minute, he chased down Marcel Berry’s through-ball down the right sideline and beat Thunder Bay goalie Matthew Mozynksi in a 1v1.
Des Moines spoiled Thunder Bay’s (2-1-0) home opener for a dose of payback after the Chill ousted the Menace from the Central Conference Championship in last year’s postseason.
These arch-rivals will go toe-to-toe next Saturday, when the host Menace will look to make it five straight years of winning the season series against the Chill. The Heartland Division champ for 11 years running has been Thunder Bay or Des Moines; last year, the Chill snapped the Menace’s streak of three consecutive division titles.
Fricke still sees an upside for his team, which has outscored opponents 14-2.
“We’re building on something. I still don’t think we’re playing our best football,” Fricke said. “We’re still getting better, and we have guys who are willing to fight the whole time. We’re going to claw until we get the result.”
UP NEXT: The Menace rolls on to Winnipeg for a Sunday-night match that concludes a string of five straight road battles.
Starting a stretch of five straight weekends at Valley Stadium, Des Moines hosts Nebraska Bugeaters FC on Fireworks Friday and Thunder Bay the following night.
MAN of the MATCH: Brandon Fricke, for the second match in a row. The defender from Grimes is in his seventh season (2010-14 and 2017-18) with his hometown club.
Match: Des Moines Menace at Thunder Bay Chill
Date: Friday, June 8, 2018
Competition: Premier Development League regular season
Venue: Fort William Stadium (artificial-turf field) in Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada
Kickoff: 7:30 p.m EDT
Weather: 60s, sunny and windy
Scoreline 1 2 F
MENACE 0 3 3
TB 0 0 0