THUNDER BAY – SPORTS – The undefeated Thunder Bay Chill (5-0-2) took over sole possession of first place in the Heartland Division last Friday evening with a 2-0 win over the Des Moines Menace. Wednesday night they will face the St. Louis Lions (2-5-1) who roar into Thunder Bay after a big 2-1 home win against the Springfield Synergy FC last Saturday night. Game time is 7:30 pm at Tbaytel Place at Fort William Stadium.
Thunder Bay had a solid outing against the Menace Friday night. Both teams were very structured in their defending leading to very few looks at goal on either end. Brandon Swartzendruber opened the scoring for the Chill in the 44’ when he finished off a cross from midfielder Paul Sunderland. The Chill had a couple of other opportunities to get an insurance goal, but Menace keeper Blanchette kept the Menace in the game. Chris Hellmann appeared to have tied the game for the Menace in the 65’, but it was called back offside. Hellmann’s displeasure with the call earned him two cautions and an ejection from the game.
Swartzendruber scored his second of the night in the 69’ when substitute Kyle Andrade slid a ball through on which Swartzendruber made no mistake in getting his 5th of the season. Playing one man down did not phase the Menace as they continued to press to get back into the game. Kelly-Rosales form the Chill was also issued a straight red card in the 85’ to put both teams at equal strength, but the Menace were not able to capitalize in the late going.
The Chill opened the season against the Lions in St. Louis with a win and a tie and continue to dominate the Lions with an 18-7-2 all-time series lead. The Lions made the playoffs for the second time in their history last season with a 6-4-4 record and don’t appear to be headed in that direction this year. “They are a very good team and that can beat you if you are not prepared”, said Chill head coach Giovanni Petraglia. “We saw that in St. Louis and this past weekend we learned that they beat a Springfield team that looked very good here in early June”, Petraglia continued.
“We can’t take anything for granted” said Chill captain Zetroy Robertson who missed both games in St. Louis due to injuries. “We know they are a well-coached side and very organized” he commented.
The Chill are looking to stay undefeated as they head on a 3 game road trip to the USA on Friday.