With their best defensive performance of the season, the Kansas City Comets grabbed their fourth road win of the season, beating the Dallas Sidekicks 9-3 on Saturday, Jan. 8 in a game that was close until the last few minutes.
The Comets' defense stood strong, holding their opponent to a season-low three goals, and held the Sidekicks scoreless in the fourth quarter, allowing just five shots. Scoring four fourth-quarter goals on Saturday, KC has now outscored opponents 14-5 in the final frame of the first six games this season.
For the first time since November, the Comets opened the scoring. It came from Leo Gibson, who knocked in a rebound less than four minutes into the game. James Togbah followed, scoring his second of the season with a nice solo effort with a couple stepovers to make it 2-0 before the end of the first quarter.
Sebastian Mendez put Dallas on the board when he squeezed a shot past Comets keeper Nicolau Neto in the second quarter. KC’s Matt Lewis and Dallas’ Julio Varela exchanged goals before Christian Anderaos scored his first MASL goal to put KC ahead 4-2 with less than a minute remaining in the first half, a goal that went on to be the game-winner.
Shortly after having a powerplay killed, Lucas Sousa gave the Comets a 5-2 lead with a great strike. Dallas pulled within two goals once again after Stephen Gonzales scored with 10 seconds left in the third period.
Rian Marques added a pair in the fourth quarter, giving KC a 7-3 lead with 3:03 left in the contest. Ray Lee and Mike Da-Silva got in on the scoring fun as the Comets secured a 9-3 road win.
The Comets (6-0; 18 points) are still unbeaten, now beating all three Central Division opponents twice this season. Sitting at the top of the table with a nine-point gap, KC now leads the MASL with 48 goals scored and a +22 goal differential. The Sidekicks (3-4; 9 points) now sit third in the division after St. Louis Ambush leapfrogged them with a big win against the Tacoma Stars on Friday.
As one of KC’s four two-point performers Saturday, Gibson now leads the league with 16 points from nine goals and seven assists. He also sits with 292 career points in the MASL from 196 goals and 196 assists, though if not for some missed opportunities from his teammates on Saturday he would have been closer to the 400-point milestone with a few more assists.
Neto was credited with a season-low nine saves, though he still had a .750 save percentage and recorded his sixth career assist. He leads the league with six wins. Offensively, the Comets found goals from eight different players.
Each team went 0-1 on the powerplay as both teams successfully killed a penalty. KC outshot Dallas 30-16.
The Comets will finish their four-game road trip next weekend when they visit the St. Louis Ambush on Friday and Tacoma Stars on Sunday. The Comets' next home game is Saturday, Jan. 22 when they host the Stars at T-Mobile Center.