Wearing their 1979-1982 retro jerseys, the San Diego Sockers (3-3) were hoping to rediscover the offense that made them one of the most dangerous teams in the league.
It wasn’t enough.
Down Kraig Chiles and Slavisa Ubiparipovic, the Sockers were unable to generate the offense needed to overcome the St. Loius Ambush (6-6) and dropped back to .500 with a 4-3 loss.
The match remained close all day long, with neither team holding more than a one-point lead and three different ties.
It was rough sledding for the Sockers in the first quarter as blue cards to Gerardo Jurado and Eduardo Velez set the Ambush up with power plays on two separate occasions. Strong work in net from William Vanzela and dogged determination from the San Diego penalty killers kept the Ambush off the boards.
It wasn’t until the second quarter that a team broke the scoreless streak as a give-and-go resulted in a Cesar Cerda goal, giving the Sockers an early 1-0 lead.
Said lead lasted a mere 28 seconds as the Ambush’s (or the “Streamers” as they were called) high pressured offense netted two quick goals to make the score 2-1 in favor of St.Loius.
The Sockers looked like a different team in the second half, coming out of the locker room with guns blazing. San Diego fired 15 total shots during the third quarter, but only one found its mark as Taylor Bond megged an Ambush defender with a shot that rattled into the bottom right corner of the net.
With the score tied at two goals apiece, the game remained deadlocked until Victor Cojocov snuck a shot inside the left post to retake the lead.
Once again, the Sockers refused to go down without a fight. After missing with his first shot, Brandon Escoto faked a shot on the rebound before sending his true strike just inside the post for his sixth goal of the season, tying the match at 3-3.
Defense took over for the rest of the fourth quarter as both sides looked to limit scoring opportunities. Unfortunately for the Sockers, Patrick Thompson’s rising volley sailed over the head of Vanzela and into the goal for the fourth Ambush goal, sealing the win for St. Loius.
The Sockers will face the Ambush again on Sunday, Feb. 28.