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Slumping in St. Louis: Swope Park Rangers fall 3-0 to STLFC

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The Swope Park Rangers lost their third straight match tonight to St. Louis FC at World Wide Technology Soccer Park by a final score of 3-0. Marc Dos Santos' squad played half the match with 10 men and the offense did not produce much of anything.

Thad Bell

St. Louis FC asserted themselves as the dominant party in this inherent cross state rivalry.

The Swope Park Rangers fell to STL by a final score of 3-0 tonight for their third straight loss. Marc Dos Santos was without his top three choices for striker, and the lack of firepower was clear. Dane Kelly and Mark Anthony Gonzalez are still recovering from injuries and Daniel Salloi is back in Hungary for school. SPR played half the match with 10 men but simply never looked once looked fit to earn a result tonight.

In the 52' minute STLFC made the lead 3-0 and basically put the game to bed. A shorthanded Swope Park defense was beat with one pass when Herrera floated behind the back line to meet the ball with his head and simply dink the ball over a rushing Jon Kempin.

St. Louis was in control for most of the match as the first goal came in the 11' minute off the foot of Schillo Tshuma. Richard Dixon played in a dangerous curling ball from the right wing that Kempin and Mulligan both left for the other to deal with. The ball bounced in front of Mulligan and right over his head to the foot of Tshuma, who easily slotted it home.

The Rangers did not have much more than one good sequence in the first half. In the 21' minute Tyler Pasher battled with two defenders in the box and eventually forced a save out of Pais. On the ensuing corner kick, Oumar Ballo rose above the defense and redirected a header off the crossbar. Kevin Oliveira also had a fantastic free kick from about 25 yards out, but the save from the keeper was even better.

Chad Bond gave STL the 2-0 advantage in the 39th minute after the referee called a foul on Swope Park that left several players scratching their heads. Bond took the set piece from just at outside the box and beat Kempin in pretty impressive fashion.

SPR would put themselves in an even bigger hole just before halftime. Ballo, who was making his first start for the Rangers, was given his second yellow of the match for a tackle that gave the referee no choice.

After conceding the third goal, the Rangers were not able to create much the rest of the game. The best look of the half came in the 57' minute off a corner kick. Amer Didic, a halftime substution, had a great looking header ricochet off the crossbar. Painfully, it was the second time of the match the Rangers were robbed by the frame.

The Rangers were given a lifeline in the 79' minute when goalscorer Chad Bond was sent off with his second yellow. But the visitors were still unable to really threaten the goal.

The crossbar on both sides of the field denied SPR, but it was an emphatic win for St. Louis. The Rangers were missing some key players on the attacking front and the offense was not able to produce much of anything. It is the third loss in a row for the Swope Park Rangers, who are now 2-3-1 on the season.