The Stars’ Raphael Cox, right, dribbles the ball with a pair of Comets defenders close by during MASL play. COURTESY PHOTO, Amy Kontras

The Stars’ Raphael Cox, right, dribbles the ball with a pair of Comets defenders close by during MASL play. COURTESY PHOTO, Amy Kontras

Stars comeback falls short in Kansas City

Jamael Cox has two goals in 7-5 road loss

  • Saturday, December 9, 2017 12:00pm
  • Sports

For the Reporter

Jamael Cox scored twice and Philip Lund collected his sixth goal of the season for Tacoma, but three early goals by the Kansas City Comets proved to be the difference in a 7-5 Stars’ loss at the Silverstein Eye Centers Arena in Independence, Mo., on Friday night.

The Comets jumped out to a lead just 19 seconds into the game when Pat Kelly made a steal on a mistake by the Stars and rocketed one past Danny Waltman. Nacho Flores and Milan Ivanovic each extended the league with goals and with just three minutes gone in the game as Tacoma found itself down 3-0.

Lund got one back late in the first quarter on a shot from midfield that caught Comets goalkeeper Casey Gasson well out of position, but it would be the only score for the Stars in the first half, and the Comets took a 5-1 lead into the half.

The Stars cut the lead to two, 5-3, midway through the third quarter on goals by Vince McCluskey and Raphael Cox before the lights went out in the arena, causing a 15-minute delay.

Once the lights came back on, Cox got the Stars to within a goal, 5-4, with two minutes gone in the fourth. But Kansas City answered with two goals of their own to take a 7-4 lead with 7:05 left. Cox scored his second goal of the game with 6:48 left, but the Stars were unable to break through again and dropped to 2-4 this season.

Leo Gibson dished out four assists in the game to give him 11 on the season for the Comets (2-3). Lucas Rodriguez scored twice and Bryan Perez and Carlos Trombini each got on the board for Kansas City.

The Stars head north to Milwaukee to take on the Wave on Saturday afternoon at 4:05 PST. The game can be seen live on masl.tv with live stats available at maslsoccer.com.

The Stars return home for a pair of games against Soles De Sonora on Saturday, Dec. 16 and Sunday, Dec. 17. Saturday’s game is Star Wars Night and fans can pick up an exclusive, limited edition Stars Grit City Jedi T-shirt by purchasing an End Zone Party Deck ticket for $42. The Party Deck includes a buffet with beer, soda and water.

First kick is 7:05 p.m. Saturday and 5:05 p.m. Sunday. Tickets may be purchased at tacomastars.com.

Stay up to date with the Stars by following them on Twitter (@TacomaStarsSC) or liking the team on Facebook (FB.com/TacomaStars).

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