The 2018-19 Kansas City Comets campaign ended Saturday afternoon following a physical battle which produced a 10-3 loss against the Milwaukee Wave in the Ron Newman Cup Playoffs.
The only change to the gameday roster was Adam James replacing Stefan Stokic. Milwaukee was without Tenzin Rampa and Hans Denison for the second straight game due to injury.
Milwaukee’s Ian Bennett scored the game’s only goal in the opening quarter. Andre Hayne made it 2-0 until Kevin Ellis and John Sosa scores to tie the game at 2-2 going into halftime.
Ian Bennett scored his second and the Comets drew level once again after Kiel Williams scored in the third quarter. The Wave ran away with it as the Comets showed frustration, receiving two red cards, handing the Wave five power play goals in the second half of the 10-3 series clincher for the Wave.
Overall, the Comets lost their cool as the officiating lost control due to their lack of consistency. The Comets gave Milwaukee five power plays, and Milwaukee scored on all five. James Togbah received a red card for committing three penalties, while Robert Palmer received a red card for ‘violent conduct or serious foul play’ following a Wave goal late on.
The Wave will now go on to the semifinals of the Ron Newman Cup Playoffs, where they will play the winner of the series between Utica City FC and Baltimore Blast. All remaining playoff games will be televised on Eleven Sports.
Safe to say that this was a much improved second season for head coach Kim Roentved, making the playoffs with a regular season record of 13-11 after going 7-15 the previous season. Much to build on and many questions going into next season. Leo Gibson was clearly KC’s best player with 33 goals and 31 assists, but James Togbah, Anthony Grant, Adam James, and Mark Saxby made significant strides in their sophomore campaign with the Comets while Kevin Ellis proved to be arguably more valuable than Landon Donovan and Jermaine Jones are to their teams. The Comets will need to keep their core as well as be more consistent next season if they can expect to retain a playoff spot and possibly give a real challenge to the Milwaukee Wave.