Kansas City Comets

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The Kansas City Comets were a professional indoor soccer team based for most of its existence in Kansas City, Missouri. They played in the original Major Indoor Soccer League (MISL; later the Major Soccer League) from 1979–1991, when they folded. They played their home games in Kemper Arena.

The team originated as the Detroit Lightning, which joined the MISL as an expansion team in the 1979–1980 season. After a year in Detroit the team relocated to San Francisco, California, becoming the San Francisco Fog. They moved to Kansas City in 1981, where they remained for ten years. In Kansas City the team went to the league playoffs seven times, advancing to the division finals three times.

History[edit]

In 1979 the Major Indoor Soccer League placed an expansion franchise in Detroit, Michigan. The team, then known as the Detroit Lightning, failed to make the playoffs, and at the end of the season were purchased by entrepreneur David Schoenstadt, later the founder of Discovery Zone. Schoenstadt relocated the team to San Francisco, California, where they were renamed the San Francisco Fog. They again failed to make the playoffs, and Schoenstadt moved the team once more, this time to Kansas City, Missouri, rebranding them the Kansas City Comets.

The Comets failed to qualify for the playoffs in the 1981–1982 season, but were thereafter consistent playoff contenders, making a total of seven playoff appearances in ten seasons. They advanced to the quarterfinals in 1985, the division semifinals in 1987, and the division finals in 1988, 1990, and 1991. They had enjoyed a strong attendance in their early years, but ticket sales declined later in their run, dropping from an average high of 15,786 in the 1983–1984 season to a low of 7,103 in the 1990–1991 season. Though they finished second in the league in their last two seasons of operations, the Comets could not withstand the drop in revenue, and folded at the end of the 1990–1991 season.

The Comets were followed the next season by the Kansas City Attack of the National Professional Soccer League; this team was known as the "Kansas City Comets" from 2001–2005. In 2010 the Missouri Comets, based in nearby Independence, joined the new Major Indoor Soccer League, carrying on the legacy of the original Comets.

Stars and fan favorites included Enzo DiPede, Billy Gazonas, Gino Schiraldi, Greg Makowski, Victor Petroni, Jan Goossens, Damir Haramina, Kia, Dale Mitchell, Alan Mayer, Zoran Savic, Jim Schwab, Gordon Hill, Tasso Koutsoukos, Manny Schwartz, David Doyle, Barry Wallace, Tim Clark, Elson Seale, Yilmaz Orhan, and Ty Keough as well as coaches Pat McBride and Rick Benben.

Ownership[edit]

Staff[edit]

  • Dick Berg General manager
  • Peter Simon Public Relations Director
  • Brad Jacobs Marketing Director
  • United States Tim Leiweke - General Manager (1981–84) President (1986–88)

Coaching staff[edit]

Head coaches[edit]

  • United States Terry Fisher (1979–80)
  • United States Scotland Johnny Moore (1980–81)
  • United States Luis Dabo (1981) 2 Wins 7 Losses
  • United States Pat McBride (1981–84) 63 Wins 80 Losses (Postseason: 2 Wins 5 Losses/No Series Wins, 2 Series Losses)
  • United States Rick Benben (1984–87) 47 Wins 57 Losses (Postseason: 2 Wins 3 Losses/1 Series Win, 1 Series Loss)
  • Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Niki Nikolic (1987-Interim) 1 Win 3 Losses
  • Northern Ireland Dave Clements (1987–91) 124 Wins 111 Losses (Postseason: 18 wins 16 Losses/3 Series Wins, 4 Series Losses)

Assistants[edit]

Year-by-year[edit]

San Francisco Fog[edit]

Year League Record Reg. Season Playoffs
1980-81 MISL 11-29 4th West Failed to Qualify

Kansas City Comets[edit]

Year Division League Reg. Season Playoffs Avg. Attendance
1981/82 Western MISL 6th Did not qualify 11,058
1982/83 Western MISL 3rd 1st Round 14,692
1983/84 Western MISL 4th 1st Round 15,786
1984/85 Western MISL 4th Quarterfinals 12,917
1985/86 Western MISL 5th Did not qualify 12,428
1986/87 Western MISL 2nd Division Semifinals 12,447
1987/88 Western MISL 3rd Division Finals 11,211
1988/89 N/A MISL 7th Did not qualify 9,228
1989/90 Eastern MISL 2nd Division Finals 10,475
1990/91 Eastern MSL 2nd Division Finals 7,103

Honors[edit]

Rookie of the Year

Coach of the Year

  • 1983: Pat McBride

Players[edit]

San Francisco Fog Roster[edit]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
1 United States GK Roy Messing
2 United States DF Buzz Demling
3 United States DF Lee Atack
4 United States DF Mark Demling
5 DF Andy Stanton
6 United States FW Mani Hernandez
7 United States FW Art Welch
8 United States FW Johnny Moore
9 United States FW Geoff Davies
10 England FW Jimmy Rolland
11 United States FW John Smillie
12 Nigeria MF Andy Atuegbu
No. Position Player
13 Scotland MF Davie Kemp
14 England DF Brian Joy
15 United States DF Len Salvemini
16 England FW John Brooks
17 England MF Mike Mancini
18 United States DF Dirk Denkers
19 England DF Len Renery
20 United States GK Tom Reynolds
Spain FW Manny Cuenca
United States DF Greg Delgado
United States FW Doug Wark
England FW Alan Sproates

Kansas City Comets[edit]

External links[edit]

San Francisco Fog[edit]

Kansas City Comets[edit]