DALLAS, TX. – The Tacoma Stars (11-11) began their stretch of final three road games Saturday night in the Lone Star state with a 7-4 win over the Dallas Sidekicks (9-14). The win pushed the Stars back into second place in the MASL Pacific Division a ½ game ahead of the Ontario Fury.
The game was a defensive battle with great goalkeeping and the first quarter was evidence of that as the lone goal came off the foot of Tacoma’s Dan Antoniuk on an assist from Jonathan Greenfield with 6:16 left in the quarter.
It took the Sidekicks just 37 seconds into the second quarter to level the match on the first of three goals from Cameron Brown on the night, this one assisted by Jamie Lovegrove. The Stars were quick to go back in front and get some breathing room as they knocked in three unanswered goals in the second to take a 4-1 to the locker room at halftime. Two of the goals were assisted by MASL leading scorer Nick Perera including Cory Keitz’s marker with 12:56 left in the half and Mike Ramos’ goal at the 10:19 mark. The third goal was courtesy of Troy Peterson with an assist to Ramos.
After an extended halftime including the Sidekicks retiring the number of Nick Stavrou, which was attended by many Dallas alumni, the third quarter played out much like the first. Only one goal was scored but this time it was Dallas who found the net on Brown’s second of the game. His unassisted goal cut the Tacoma lead to 4-2 heading into the final quarter.
A mirror of the second quarter, the fourth quarter was also wide open on offense with five goals being scored between the teams. The first came when Tacoma’s Joseph Cairel found a loose ball in front of the Dallas goal and tapped it in for a 5-2 lead with 13:11 left to play. Perera converted on a Philip Lund assist with 8:04 on the clock to give Tacoma a four-goal lead at 6-4. Nestor Hernandez was credited with a goal when Tacoma scored an own goal with 4:14 remaining to cut the Stars’ lead in half at 6-3.
The Stars’ final goal of the night was the first of the year for keeper Danny Waltman. He had a stellar night in goal but worked his way on to the scorer’s column when he put a toss into the Dallas goal against six Sidekicks attackers. The final goal of the night was Brown’s third for Dallas to reach the 7-4 final with just 1:28 left to play.
With the win Tacoma takes the season series from Dallas 2-1 and will head to Monterrey tomorrow to face the Southwest Division Champion Flash in another game with big playoff implications for the Stars.
1st Qtr – TAC Antoniuk (Greenfield) 8:44; Penalties – DAL Lovegrove yellow card (dissent) 8:42.
2nd Qtr – DAL Brown (Lovegrove) 0:37; TAC Keitz (Perera) 0:53; TAC Peterson (Ramos) 2:04; TAC Ramos (Perera) 5:31; Penalties – DAL Jones yellow card (dissent) 8:45.
3rd Qtr – DAL Brown 7:03 Penalties – none.
4th Qtr – TAC Cairel 1:49; TAC Perera (Lund) 6:56; DAL Hernandez 10:46; TAC Waltman 12:59; DAL Brown (Eligwe) 13:32; Penalties – none.
Shots – Tacoma 3-5-6-4 (18), Dallas 3-7-6-9 (25)
Attendance – 2,198
The Stars play their second game in two nights when they head to Monterrey on Sunday at 4:05 pm to face the Southwest Division Champions. Catch all the action as the Stars fight for a playoff spot live on MASL.tv.
There’s still time to purchase a Legacy Membership with the Tacoma Stars. Guarantee your seat to all the action by calling 1-844-STARS-84, or firstname.lastname@example.org, or go to www.tacomastars.com.