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Comets looking for response in doubleheader with Wave

First place Comets look to renew winning streak

Thad Bell

Poised for a return to winning ways, the Kansas City Comets are in for a tough doubleheader against the Milwaukee Wave this weekend. It begins Saturday evening as KC makes their second trip of the season to Brew City.

MASL Regular Season- Matchday 12

Kansas City Comets @ Milwaukee Wave

When: Saturday, February 19, 6:05 p.m. CST

Where: UW-Milwaukee Panther Arena, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

How To Watch: MASLtv

The two teams meet again less than 24 hours later at Cable Dahmer Arena on Sunday.

MASL Regular Season- Matchday 13

Kansas City Comets vs Milwaukee Wave

When: Saturday, February 20, 4 p.m. CST

Where: Cable Dahmer Arena, Independence, Missouri

How To Watch: MASLtv

After a 6-0 start, the Comets have stumbled twice since mid-January.

KC’s most recent roadblock came last weekend when they suffered a 6-5 overtime loss to the Chihuahua Savage. As player-coach Leo Gibson put it, the Comets played terrible in the second half.

The Comets can get back on track this weekend with a pair of wins and dismiss the Central Division title race threat posed by the Milwaukee Wave. On the other hand, a two-game sweep for the Wave would give the Comets something to worry about as KC’s divisional title race lead over MKE would be down to seven points with nearly half the season left to play.

For now, the Comets (9-1-1; 28 points) still maintain a commanding lead in the Central Division. They sit eight points clear of the Dallas Sidekicks (7-7; 20 points) with three games in hand and 11 points ahead of the St. Louis Ambush (5-8-2; 17 points) with four games in hand.

Players to Watch:

Leo Gibson - Coming off his most disappointing performance of the season. Still leads the league with 2.8 points per game from 18 goals and 10 assists. Three goals shy of tying Wes Wade’s record for most goals in Kansas City indoor soccer history.

Adam James - Ended a 17-game drought without scoring a goal by putting the ball in the back of the net twice last weekend, but only one counted.

John Sosa - Has reached indoor soccer’s double-double (double-digits in goals and assists) in a season for the fifth time in his career. Scored a brace last weekend, putting him at 10 goals and 12 assists this season. Still chasing a career-high 13 goals and 21 assists.

KC Injury Report

OUT: James Togbah (left oblique strain)

DOUBTFUL: Mike Da-Silva (right hip strain)

QUESTIONABLE: Nicolau Neto (left knee strain)

The Comets won both of this season’s previous meetings with the Wave at the end of December.

Milwaukee Wave

The Milwaukee Wave’s season got off to a rough start as the 2018/19 Ron Newman Cup champions lost their first five. Since picking up their first win of the season on Jan. 14 against Chihuahua, the Wave are 5-2.

Head coach Giuliano Oliviero has his team playing well, winning four of the last five. Milwaukee has won four straight at home and is coming from a low-scoring 4-3 win over the Harrisburg Heat.

Milwaukee brings a trio of veterans in Marcio Leite, Ian Bennett and Luan Oliveira, who have combined for a total of 69 points this season from 40 goals and 29 assists.

The Wave (5-6-1; 15 points) sit last in the Central, trailing the Ambush by two points. MKE also holds onto the last wild card spot, five points clear of Chihuahua.

Players to Watch:

Matt Perrella - The Wave keeper enters this weekend on a four-game win streak, highlighted by a career-high 27 saves in a 10-9 road win over Chihuahua. Most recent outing came in last week’s 4-3 win over Harrisburg Heat where he stopped a career-high 83 percent of shots. Second in the MASL with 132 saves.

Derek Huffman - In his fifth season in the MASL, the defender-turned-forward is having a career season, averaging 2.3 points per game from eight goals and eight assists in seven games.

Ian Bennett - Puts up mythical figures when playing KC. Closing in on 100 regular-season points against the Comets, Bennett enters this weekend with 96 points against KC. Leads the MASL with 26 goals, behind KC’s Gibson with 2.7 points per game.

MKE Injury Report

OUT: Tylor Bacher (shoulder); Daniel Chamale (achilles); Daniel Mattos (left quad); Alex Bradley (left knee/thumb); Mario Alvarez (right foot); Douglas Dos Santos (hamstring)

Final Predictions

This weekend will bring forth a big challenge for both sides. KC is looking to bounce back against a Wave side that is hot. The Wave are going against one of the league's top teams in the Comets.

I predict a 7-5 win for the Wave in Milwaukee before the Comets pick up a 6-5 win in KC.