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AC St. Louis Takes on Des Moines Menace in US Open Cup Tuesday

AC St. Louis travels to West Des Moines’ Valley Stadium for a 7:30 pm CDT Tuesday night matchup with the Des Moines Menace of the Premier Development League.  The winner of the contest will take on the winner of the NSC Minnesota Stars match with the Kansas City Athletics of USASA on June 22.   AC St. Louis goes into Tuesday night’s action fresh off a road win over the Puerto Rico Islanders, while the Menace were in St. Louis on Sunday to play their PDL Heartland Conference rivals, the St. Louis Lions.  That contest ended in a 1-1 draw.

The Des Moines Menace are in their 17th season and are currently in second place in the Heartland Conference, one point behind the Rochester Thunder and two points ahead of the Lions with 4-1-4 mark in PDL play.  They won the conference in 2009.  The Menace are coached by Laurence John “Laurie” Calloway, a 54 year-old Englishman who played with Blackburn Rovers and several other English teams along with the San Jose Earthquakes of the old NASL.  Calloway has a lengthy coaching resume, includng stops with the Rochester Rhinos, Seattle Sounders and San Jose Clash.  The Menace have had 22 alumni play in MLS over the years, and regularly draw crowds of 3000-4000, so their franchise is to be respected and taken seriously. 

The Menace are on a seven game unbeaten streak and are third among all PDL teams in all-time Open Cup wins.  Despite playing this Sunday, then the game Tuesday and two more PDL matches against the Thunder Bay Chill next Friday and Sunday, Coach Laurie Calloway is focused on the Open Cup game.  “One step at a time. Don’t want to think about Thunder Bay until after this Tuesday’s game,” he said. “(AC St. Louis) will be tough; all pro teams are. They aren’t pro teams for nothing. I think they’ll be dangerous, but I think we’ve got a heck of a chance to knock these guys off.”  The leading scorer for the Menace is midfielder Clark Bradford of Christian Brothers University, who has three goals.  Midfielders Logan McDaniel of Loyola Marymount and South African Lebogang Moloto of Lindsey Wilson College have chipped in two goals apiece.  Jason Williams has gotten the bulk of starts in goal for the Menace, although Billy Williams and Jake Wright have also seen action.

AC St. Louis will be bringing the same group of players to Des Moines as they did to Puerto Rico Saturday, but will be hurting without defender Dillon Barna and midfielder Manuel Kante.  With a third of their league season gone, Tuesday will be a great opportunity for Coach Claude Anelka’s team to build upon their Saturday night road win in Puerto Rico and get some momentum going.  Even though they are saddled with a 2-7-1 record, eight USSF D2 teams will make the playoffs, and with having played seven of their first ten games on the road, AC St. Louis have a majority of the remaining games at AB Soccer Park.  A good cup run would be a great tonic for this team and its fans.  But again, don’t take the Menace for granted, and remember that many of the players on AC St. Louis were playing in the PDL at this time last year. 

At this point I am unaware of any plans for online streaming or any type of broadcast of this game.  If I become aware of such, I will post it in a response to this article and on the AC St. Louis Fanatic blog Facebook page.  GO AC !!!

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3 Responses

  1. Gerry, slightly off topic but I just watched an interview on Channel 5 news with Steve Nash from Joburg South Africa. NOT ONCE did they mention that Steve’s team, The Vancouver Whitecaps, will be playing here in St Louis on June 26th against AC! so I made a point of telephoning and leaving a voicemail message for the Sports Editor letting him know that Steve is one of the owners and backers for the Whitecaps and he should have asked him if he is coming to St Louis on the 26th to support his team when they play here against AC. I also told him that it isabout time they actually took the opportunity to mention AC St Louis ande recognize their existance. What a fantastic opportunity missed! I hope they will call me back and I will bend their ear further! I heard the Menace game will have score updates on Twitter but, as far as I can tell, that is about it for keeping track of the score during the game. They did ask if we plan on any AC fans travelling to the game but I thought that might be a bit of stretch even for the most fanatical to take on a 6 hour drive on a Tuesday for an open cup road game against an amateur opponent! If we were playing Kansas City Wiz then maybe I would consider doing it myself but not for this game.

  2. Wow! I didn’t realize until I read your post more thoroughly that Laurie Calloway was the coach of the menace! I remember very well when he was the Coach of the San Jose Clash and how Eric Wynalda is strongly rumored to have funded the plane that flew over Spartan Stadium before Calloway’s last home game in charge of the Clash carring a streamer that read ” Calloway must go” !!! Wynalda and Calloway were very well known to have not got along well when prima donna Wynalda was the “star striker” in San Jose not least because Calloway dropped him when he played crap ( which he frequently did!)

  3. I hope Steve Nash brings a USL or NASL team to Phoenix. I’ve heard of talks but nothing set in place. The last two professional exhibition games played here drew over 45,000 in attendance each game and the Mexico game sold out University of Phoenix stadium, 60,000 plus.

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