MILWAUKEE - The Milwaukee Wave needed a game like this to bolster the postseason potential, and they showed out in front of a great crowd at Panther Arena Sunday, March 27. The Wave defensively played their best first three quarters of the entire season, limiting a Kansas City group who has a +32 goal advantage on the year to one goal in the first three quarters.
"To beat the top team in our division is a huge win for us today," said Head Coach Giulano Oliviero. "It definitely gives our guys a huge confidence boost going into our final regular-season game as we continue to fight for our playoff lives."
As far as the MASL Ron Newman Cup Playoffs, the Wave can now clinch a wildcard spot with a win and a loss by St. Louis. Wave trail Ontario for the seventh spot by virtue of goal differential tiebreaker.
Offensively, it was more of the same from MASL leading scorer Ian Bennett as he slotted home four of the Wave’s eight goals, linking up beautifully with his teammates to give the Wave a comfortable five-goal advantage during the third quarter.
The Wave’s dominant first three quarters were also aided by goals from Gordy Gurson, James Weber and Javier Steinwascher. The Wave relied on open field passes and peppering the Comets' goal for their offensive attack and allowed Kansas City to move further out of their defensive shape as they tried to mount a comeback.
Kansas City did score a series of goals in quick succession in the fourth period to bring the Wave’s lead down to two, but there was too little time for the comeback to be successful as the Wave moved to third place in the Central division and inched themselves into the final wildcard spot with one game remaining.
"I’ll take some of the responsibility for what happened in the fourth," added Oliviero. " We had a ‘too many men on the field’ penalty that kinda set the tone, but we fought back, made some adjustments, rested some guys and got back in the fight. We’re gonna take the positives from this game and continue to do work as we prepare for Saturday."