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United-Barons post-game quotesheet

QUOTESHEET U.S. OPEN CUP 2009
TUESDAY, JUNE 30, 2009 – D.C. UNITED 2, OCEAN CITY BARONS 0

D.C. UNITED HEAD COACH TOM SOEHN
On the team’s performance

Well they dropped everybody back in … and I know those situations are tough to break down. We talked about at half how to do that. I think we did better at it, and that’s part of the learning process. We have a lot of new guys on the field and they have to grow into the game.

On Ocean City’s play
For them it’s a big game, and they came out and competed hard. Defensively I knew they would tuck in, and they did. They looked for us to make a mistake and we almost did in the first half. They probably came in with a game plan and at the end they gave it a push. Credit them for competing.

On bench players getting time
We’re still learning some things about our guys. There are positives and negatives. I thought Greg [Janicki] had a good handle on the game in the back. It was important to get Greg some minutes with Dejan [Jakovic] gone. I think he showed what he did last year. I thought that Milos [Kocic] had a good game. Several guys did well and some other guys who didn’t do enough to make a game-day roster, and that you’ll see as the course [of the season] goes on.

On Boyzzz Khumalo and Ange N’Silu
I thought Ange [N’Silu] struggled the first half. He didn’t hold the ball for us, he didn’t really move off of Boyzzz [Khumalo]’s runs. Boyzzz gave us a lot of energy, and when Boyzzz checks you have to pull into the space that he creates, and Ange didn’t do a good job of it. He did a little bit better second half, but he’s still got to make some progress. Boyzzz gives you a lot of energy out there. The great thing about Boyzzz is that he gives you energy and sometimes the bad thing is that he gives you the energy and you’re not sure what to do off of him. But we know what Boyzzz brings, he brings a lot of heart every time he plays.

On the Ben Olsen substitution at halftime
It was planned. We want to get Benny [Olsen]’s feet wet again and it’s important to get him minutes. But it was already established before the game.

On Chris Pontius’ impact after substitution
[Pontius] was unfortunate not to score, but he created a lot of havoc right away. He held the ball, beat guys on the dribble. He showed why he’s having such a successful season for us.

On Ocean City building confidence
I don’t know that they gained confidence because I don’t think they created a whole lot of opportunities. I think after we scored they actually played and from that point they were dangerous.

On enjoying Open Cup games
I think I enjoy that fact that we get to see people play and learn about them. These game are hard, I’ve been through them as a player and as a coach. The other team has got a lot to gain. For some of ours, our guys take it too light and you can’t afford to do that.

On the League game Saturday
I’ve always said that there’s bumps throughout the season. We had one against Chicago and we turn around and have one not too many weeks later against Columbus. There’s still something to play for. It’s going to be a good test for us.

On Ocean City’s play
They played very direct from the back. After they brought on a second forward then it caused us some problems. We kind of went in a defensive shell…I thought could’ve played a little bit more.

On first half play
Some of our guys were getting their first game in a while, so I expected it to be a little rusty.

D.C. UNITED GOALKEEPER MILOS KOCIC
On the goal line save he made late in the second half

I have no idea [what happened]. When I saved the goal, I tried to see where the ball is, and then I saw Devon [McTavish] jumping and clearing it off the line. I saw him jumping, I don’t know who kicked it, but I think it was him. The guys were like, ‘What happened?’ And I was like ‘I don’t know. I didn’t see what happened.’

On Ocean City’s performance
I’m really surprised. [Ocean City] came defending really mature. They’re a really young team – all college guys – and I’m really surprised. It was great defending and they were waiting for their chances, playing on the counter attack.

D.C. UNITED MIDFIELDER CHRISTIAN GOMEZ
On coming off the bench

As a player, you always want to play. Even in practice, you want to be starting. Obviously, the coach went with other players, giving them the opportunity. And I was just ready when he called upon me and we were able to get the result.

On having so much trouble with Ocean City
We had a couple of chances in the first half. I think if we get one of those goals, it changes the game dramatically. But they played well defensively. They bunkered down and made it difficult for us.

D.C. UNITED MIDFIELDER ANDREW JACOBSON
On the upcoming game against Columbus

I think it will be good. We got some guys some rest so I think we’ll be pretty fresh going in. We do have a game on Saturday and we have to turn around and play again on Tuesday. I think we’re really coming together; we’re really picking it up. Going and playing a Columbus, a good team on the road, is going to be a good test for us.

D.C. UNITED MIDFIELDER CHRIS PONTIUS
On coming on at halftime

It was good to get my legs going for a half tonight. It obviously was an important half because it was still tied and it was a pressure situation too. But now we’re looking forward to the Columbus’ game [on Saturday].

On getting back to League play
The Colorado game was setback, and I think we’re going to come into this game [at Columbus] a lot hungrier and well rested too.

Broadcasting and P.A. Request: When speaking of the organization, please refer to the team as either “D.C. United” or “United,” but not “the D.C. United” or “the United.” We appreciate your cooperation.

Doug Hicks, dhicks@dcunited.com, (202) 587-5448,
Boris Flores, bflores@dcunited.com, (202) 587-5452,
Kyle Sheldon, ksheldon@dcunited.com, (202) 587-5450 or
Cristina Cruz, ccruz@dcunited.com, (202) 587-5440