Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Bills Seek to Settle Score with Creighton Early Showdown Matches Ranked Teams

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Bills Seek to Settle Score with Creighton Early Showdown Matches Ranked Teams

Article excerpt

Was Creighton's 2-1 overtime victory over St. Louis University here last year a fluke, or did the better team prevail?

Tonight's rematch in Omaha, Neb., could settle the issue . . . or prolong the debate.

The fourth-ranked Bluejays (2-0) and the sixth-ranked Billikens (2-0) face off in one of the college soccer season's first big showdowns.

Last year, St. Louisan Brian Kamler (Parkway West) scored two goals as Creighton rallied against the run of play and beat St. Louis U. at the Billiken Sports Center. Both teams went on to the NCAA Tournament.

Kamler, a two-time All-American and the Missouri Valley Conference player of the year, has heard the talk from the Billikens' camp that Creighton got lucky last year. He spent the summer playing for the U.S. national "B" team with SLU's Brian McBride and Shane Battelle.

"I think they did outplay us last year," said Kamler, a senior forward. "We were lucky that McBride hit the crossbar a couple of times."

Kamler didn't miss many shots last year. He had 15 goals, and is on a pace to top that this season. He scored a total of four goals in the Bluejays' opening victories over North Carolina-Charlotte and Alabama A&M.

"I'm getting a lot of help from my teammates," he said. "They give me a lot of support and I've been able to convert my chances.

"And playing with guys like McBride and Battelle this summer certainly helped my game."

Does that sound like a setup?

The Bills, who have warmed up with romps over Loyola (4-1) and Dayton (9-0), aren't taking this game lightly. They held Battelle, a preseason All-American, out of the first two games to allow his bruised heel time to heal.

The winner of tonight's match will establish superiority in the Midwest Region, at least until Southern Methodist gets its turn to challenge. The Mustangs, who lost to both Creighton and SLU in the regular season last year, upset the Bluejays in the first round of the playoffs. …

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