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Menace Stays Perfect in Thunder Bay

By Danny Kotula, 06/03/22, 8:00PM CDT


An 11th straight victory keeps Des Moines perfect four matches in


A highly physical 90 minutes led to Des Moines Menace's eleventh straight win. The club's second clean sheet highlighted a 3-0 win over Thunder Bay Chill in Canada.


A tightly-contested first half saw Menace go ahead and never look back despite some nervy moments.

Straight from kickoff, the visitors were the aggressors, picking up the opener via Ryan Kingsford's headed goal from close range. 

From there, Menace lacked for possession but kept their opponents at bay. In doing so, three Des Moines players were issued bookings.

Midfielder Luka Nedic was first to go into the book, receiving his third yellow card of the season in the 20th minute.

As the home side continued to push for an equalizer, Yanis Lelin was forced to take down a Chill player and receive the second booking of the match on his Menace debut.

Just seven minutes later, Lelin's opposite wing-back Gianluca Fiorini also stopped a promising wide attack and met the same fate, seeing yellow in the 39th minute.

Despite all the fouls and physical play, Thunder Bay didn't find the back of the net before the halftime whistle. A deflected strike that hit the woodwork was as close as Chill would come to an equalizer, keeping Menace ahead 1-0 at the break.

SECOND HALF (Menace 1 - 0 Thunder Bay at half)

The second half continued much in the same vein as the first, as another Menace played got carded. This time, it was central midfielder Eliot Goldthorp in the 51st minute who was taken in the referee's book. 

Soon after, Kingsford found a second goal through a clever touch to round the goalkeeper. A simple pass from attacking midfielder Ryley Kraft put him in position to deftly remove the keeper from the play and slot home from close range.

The 55th-minute strike put Menace ahead by two and gave the away side the cushion they needed to play comfortably the rest of the way.

Continuing with the trend, center back Malik Smith picked up yet another yellow for Menace in minute 69, quickly followed by head coach Dean Johnson.

The nail in the coffin came in the 83rd minute from Fernando Garcia, making his first appearance since landing #3 on the SportsCenter Top 10 on May 14.

Garcia's goal was the final tally of the night, giving Menace win number four in four tries on the year.


Starting XI (3-4-1-2): Grant Makela, goalkeeper; Malik Smith, Connor Langan, Morris Duggan, Gianluca Fiorini, Yanis Lelin, defenders; Eliot Goldthorp, Luka Nedic, Ryley Kraft, midfielders; Edoardo Degl'Innocenti, Ryan Kingsford, forwards.

Degl'Innocenti, Lelin, and Duggan all made their first appearance in the starting eleven this season.

Bokota came on as a substitute to make his Menace debut.

Kingsford is the fourth Menace player to score a brace on the year.

Kraft's four assists lead the Menace, followed by Goldthorp with two.


Menace's five yellow cards were the most in a single match this season; each of Menace's four matches have ended with different yellow card counts.

Menace have scored more goals in the second half than they did in the first in three consecutive matches.


Menace continues its Canadian road trip Sunday as they face FC Manitoba. That match kicks off at 7 p.m. Central time.


An updated look at the table as Menace continue to lead USL League Two's Deep North Division