Allen, TX - The Dallas Sidekicks are off to a 3-0 start. They have won every game in convincing fashion, and they starting to create a serious home field advantage. However, during the 7-3 rout of the Rio Grande Valley Flash on Friday night, Head Coach Tatu was adamant that the team not become too comfortable. In front of a crowd of 5,606, and leading by four goals, the team was still treated to a heated earful from their feisty head coach. After the game, Tatu explained that he is still trying to shape the younger talent on the team, and that taking a needless penalty for too many men on the field will always get him hot.
The game had a stop and go start to it, with Dallas missing on a few breakaways and a flurry of shots on goal. After the first period, neither team scored, but Dallas had the edge in the time of possession and scoring chances.
Dallas Sidekicks midfielder Franck Mbemba started off the scoring with his goal at the 5:30 mark of the second period. This was the first of three scores for the two sides in the next two minutes. Dallas was hit with a questionable penalty for a dangerous play at the 6:15 point of the second quarter, but would tally a short-handed goal off the foot of forward Shaun David and assisted by defender Kiley Couch 41 seconds into the Flash’s man advantage. Rio Grande Valley would match that score with a power play goal 15 seconds later. Dallas would take a 2-1 lead into the locker room.
Dallas came out from the locker room and started the second half off quick. Within the first 1:33, Dallas Sidekicks forward Robert Luevano netted his first of two goals off an assist by Patrick Shamu. Midfielder Jamie Lovegrove tallied another goal, at the 3:12 mark, with a beautiful header after some quick give-and-go passing with Shaun David. David would factor in on the next goal two minutes later, setting up Robert Luevano for a breakaway and his second goal of the match. Forward Patrick Shamu capitalized on a Flash turnover and fed midfielder Ricardinho, who had an easy tap in past a helpless keeper, for the Dallas Sidekicks’ fourth goal of the quarter. Rio Grande Valley did manage a score with less than three minutes left in the third, off a shot by midfielder Edgar Flores.
When asked what he said to the team at halftime, to bolster such a response from his team, Tatu said the team had a “heart to heart” with a wink.
The fourth quarter was much like the first with its stop and start tempo. Penalties determined the pacing as much as anything. After multiple power plays for both teams, Dallas Midfielder Ricardinho scored the team’s seventh goal, and his second of the night, while on a power play. Rio Grande Valley would add a third goal in the waning minutes of this lopsided match.
The Dallas Sidekicks are undefeated and undeniably a force to be reckoned with.