MASL Regular Season- Matchday 4
Kansas City Comets @ St. Louis Ambush
When: Saturday, Jan. 16, 7:05 p.m. CST
Where: The Family Arena, St. Charles, Missouri
How to Watch: MASL Single Game Pass or MASL Regular Season Pass
The Kansas City Comets are headed to St. Louis for their first trip down I-70 this season for a meeting with the Ambush.
While still early in the season, this matchup will be crucial for both teams. Following this match, both teams, who enter with 1-2 records, will have played a third of the mandatory schedule of 12 games. The winner of the match will return to .500 while the loser will drop two games under .500.
The Comets are looking to return to winning ways after dropping both games against the Florida Tropics last weekend. KC saw their three-goal lead slip away with an overtime loss before the Tropics beat the Comets pretty handily two days later.
The Comets could be a little depleted. Leo Gibson will serve his one-game suspension for a red card last weekend. Kevin Ellis may also miss after suffering a knee injury that kept him out of last Sunday’s contest. Lastly, Ray Lee may miss through injury as well.
If Ellis does join Gibson from home, that would be two of KC’s leading scorers out of the lineup. Ellis and Gibson each have three goals, but rookie Lucas Sousa also has three goals along with four assists, leading the team with seven points.
The Comets enter Saturday on the better side of one the more one-sided rivalries around. In 29 previous meetings, KC has a record of 20-8 against the Ambush, including winning 16 of the first 17 meetings between the two franchises. The last couple years have seen a significant switch, however, with the Ambush winning seven of the last 10 regular season meetings.
KC did beat the Ambush in the Central Cup last month, a game that ended 8-3 at Cable Dahmer Arena. After Saturday, the Comets will host four of their next five matches through the month of February.
St. Louis Ambush
Saturday’s contest will be the home opener for the Ambush, coming off their first win of the season over the Dallas Sidekicks last weekend. Before that the Ambush dropped two against the Florida Tropics, bringing their record to 1-2.
The Ambush had a busy offseason, bringing in former Comet goalkeeper Brett Petricek and former Baltimore Blast and Milwaukee Wave title-winning forward Max Ferdinand. St. Louis also acquired Sam Guernsey from Baltimore, Stefan Mijatovic from Florida, and Richard Schmermund from Orlando. The Ambush offloaded former Comets Stefan St. Louis, Andre Braithwaite, and Anthony Grant.
St. Louis is led by Hewerton Moreira, who leads the Ambush in his fourth season as head coach. The Ambush will look to goalkeeper Paulo Nascimento to provide stability in the defense while they look to get some of their struggling attackers more involved.
It seems like everything is going against the Comets for this one. It is the home opener for the Ambush, KC is coming off a loss while St. Louis is coming off a win, KC will be without player-coach Leo Gibson and possibly other key players, and KC is entering a building where they have lost three straight times and haven’t won in 749 days.
For my final prediction, I am going to predict a third consecutive loss for the Comets. It will be close, as they usually are, but St. Louis has shown improvements in each game and they will be difficult to stop if they are more clinical in front of goal.