Saturday, April 11, 2009

Aaron Hohlbein interview - 04/08/2009

This week I was able to get all the of the top vote getters in the fan poll. First up is Aaron Hohlbein. He scored his first MLS goal last week and seems to have be the pick to be Jimmy’s partner in the center of the defense.

I asked Aaron to talk about getting that first goal and about taking over for Jimmy’s scoring. We talk about the San Jose game and what changed to improve the defense. We of course talk about the upcoming Seattle game. I also asked if there is any pressure for the spot from Matt?



Aaron heading the ball in the San Jose game...

Matt Besler interview - 04/08/2009

Matt talks about starting the last game, about playing left back instead of center and the difference. I asked him how he thought he did and about having his family there. He talks about looking forward to going to Seattle. I asked him with Aaron scoring, if there is any pressure on the defense to keep up the scoring and with Aaron leading the defensive scoring, is Jimmy over the hill? Matt says hi to Jess.



Matt in the San Jose game...

Lance Watson interview - 04/08/2009

Talked to Lance at practice about a variaty of topics this week. I asked Lance how it felt to be starting now, is right back a good natural spot for you and some of the challenges to getting into the lineup? We talked about how he has played just about every spot so far, he mentioned it might not be good to play center back because of his height. We also talked about the challenge in playing in Seattle, will the crowd be intimidating and does the crowd ever get to him?



Lance in the San Jose game...

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Bannister Mall (not much left) 04/08/2009

Mike from Down The Byline and I were able to go inside the mall one more time before it is gone. This end looks ready to do business...


Some fine merchandise is still available...


The latest in audio equipment...


Help keep the stores clean, "Leave food and drink at the door"...


Dog tags?

Don't forget to pick up your gift cards!!!

Okay, no refunds on earings is one thing. But no refund on teeth? That's not fair. Maybe you can exchange teeth within 3 days?

Exit


The model railroad may have seen better days...


Moved down the hall? Not much hall left in there...


The end of the mall from the lower level...


From talking to people that are knowledgeable of the overall plan, it sound like the demolition is as much as a month and a half ahead of schedule. One estimate I heard was that the mall would all be knocked down in July. Once it is all down and they finish hauling away the recyclable materials, they will then break up the pad. It will be chunked up, ground up and reused in the project.
You can compare these to the last time I went inside the mall and you can see the rest of the images from this trip in this gallery.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Kansas City Wizards Practice 04-08-2009

Stopped by practice on Wednesday to watch the scrimmage. I arrived a little after it started but I think I saw all the goals. Last Sundays starters were the blue team, the green team was everyone else. Harrington was back practicing and was playing on green. The green team scored first on a PK. Did not see the foul but Abe put it away to take the lead.

Michael Kraus was everywhere. Here he works around Jimmy Conrad.



A little later, Kraus intercepted the ball and took towards goal. He barely avoids a tackle by Hohlbein...


Aaron recovers quickly but Michael has a good lead...


Jimmy Conrad came over to help cover...

Michael fights through the double team and somehow gets the ball over to Kevin Souter who put the ball away to put the green team up by 2...


Lance Watson and Roger Espinoza...


Claudio had a couple breakaways. He scored on the second one to pull back within 1...

Santiago Hirsig continues to impress me. He is a smart and talented player and seems to be fitting in well...


More shots in the gallery.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Kansas City Wizards 2 - 0 San Jose

It was a cold, windy and wet day. Big Claudio almost blew away...

Fortunately there were a few people to help him stay grounded...


There were many story lines Sunday. The defense came together to hold San Jose scoreless. Lance Watson started his second game and first at right back. Lance played a very good solid game. When he made a turnover, he fought to contain the other player and won the ball back. Here is Lance going above Cam Weaver to win a header...


In the middle was the normal starters, Jimmy Conrad and Aaron Hohlbein. Aaron not only helped anchor a stingy defense Sunday, he took a page from Jimmy's book last year and scored the winning goal. Here Aaron dives for a header (not the goal). Unfortunately I was not shooting when Aaron scored the goal, I was upstairs thawing out my fingers and cleaning a small layer of ice from the front of my lens.


On the other side was Matt Besler. He got his first start in the MLS, not at center but on the left side when Harrington went down with a hamstring strain in practice. Matt kept his side of the field pretty clean...

Kevin Hartman going horizontal in front of goal. Too bad almost nobody was there to see it...

Herculez Gomez had a good day as well. He made the pass that put Claudio into scoring position.

Here Claudio has received that pass and is shooting...


The ball bounces up in the net (that means it is a goal)...


And Claudio flys again, now in celebration...


While the attendance was a bit low due to the weather and a rare Sunday afternoon game, the Cauldron faithful were there...

It was another miserable day for photography, at least for my efforts. Cold, wet and dark does not make it easy. You can go to KC - San Jose Gallery to see more of my images.

Go read Mike’s Cold, windy, wet and win for more game analysis

2009 interview poll - Week 3

Due to some computer and internet issues, I am quite late getting the poll posted.

Please vote here and over at Down The Byline.

In what turns out to be an all defense poll this week:

Lance Watson - Solid performance in his second straight start, helped shutdwon San Jose
Aaron Hohlbein - Helped shutdown San Jose, first MLS goal, game winning goal
Matt Besler - First MLS start, helped shutdown San Jose

If there are any specific question you would like us to ask, please leave them in the comments.