PARK CITY — The Dallas Sidekicks have defeated Wichita this season using the one skill Wichita can’t work on at practice: Experience.
The B52s fell to Dallas twice earlier this season, and Saturday’s first home meeting with the Sidekicks was no different — a 6-0 Dallas victory.
“They’re experienced, they’re organized, and it’s shown every time we’ve played them,” Wichita’s Chris Lemons said. “Tonight we came out disorganized, we came out working for ourselves, and they exploited that big time with their experience in their organization. You’ve got to hand it to them, they’ve got a good team, good players, and we didn’t show up.”
Dallas controlled the possession with passes to space, knowing a teammate will find them. Although Wichita created some opportunities, the newness of the B52s made maintaining possession difficult against Dallas’ pressure.
“The first half of the game I felt like we didn’t show up as a team. We chased a lot, we tried to beat too many players with the ball, and that hurt us,” Lemons said. “(In the second half) we decided as a team we needed to be organized and work hard, it’s just unfortunate that we played into the motions of the game.”
The Sidekicks found offensive production from five different players. Jamie Lovegrove chipped Wichita goalkeeper Jason Dewey with 7:23 remaining in the first quarter, and Nestor Hernandez’s finish gave Dallas a 2-0 lead after the first period. Franck Mbemba assisted one goal and scored another in the second period to give the Sidekicks a 4-0 lead at halftime.
Dallas scored two more goals in the second half, but Wichita created opportunities, moving the ball up the field, and utilizing all five field players behind the ball on defense.
“That’s one of the big things that we have to learn to overcome, we can’t play here and there,” Wichita coach Larry Inlow said. “We have to come out and play every minute, and put an entire game together, and when we do, we do good. It’s when we abandon that that it gives us fits.
The B52s will face Dallas one more time at home to close the season, and Inlow hopes to show the Sidekicks a more mature team.
“We have one more game against them this season here, and it will be our last chance before the playoffs to show them that we deserve to be on a caliber team like them,” Inlow said. “In order for us to do that we’ve just got to make sure that we can handle the situations that they put us in when we’re playing a good team, and when our character and strategy is tested by a good team, that we don’t abandon it.”
Scoring_Dallas, Lovegrove (Arredondo), 7:38; Hernandez (unassisted), 8:23. Penalties_Wichita, Barton (Boarding), 14:49.
Scoring_Dallas, Arredondo (Mbemba) (power play), 1:22; Mbemba (Ricardinho), 13:48. Penalties_Dallas, Mbemba (dangerous play), 3:51; Wichita, Modesto (dangerous play), 3:51; Dallas, Quintana (delay of game), 8:31; Wichita, Clare (six fouls), 12:16.
Scoring_Dallas, Withers (unassisted), 8:54. Penalties_Dallas, Videla (six fouls), 1:44; Wichita, Bryant (Pushing), 5:42; Wichita, Inlow (unsportsmanlike conduct), 5:42; Wichita, Clare (unsportsmanlike conduct), 8:43; Wichita, Lawter (six fouls), 13:50.
Scoring_Dallas, Lovegrove (Stavrou), 0:38. Penalties_None.
Shots_Dallas, 5-3-2-2_12; Wichita, 2-3-1-1_7.
Saves_Dallas, Milosevic 7 on 7 shots; Wichita, Dewey 6 on 12 shots.