Kreis becomes first century club member
When Jason Kreis broke Roy Lassiter's mark of 88 career goals last season to become Major League Soccer's all-time leading goal scorer, he said that he was proud of the accomplishment, but there was another milestone that he had in mind.
"I finally figured out what 100 meant to me," said the 32-year-old Real Salt Lake forward. "I told people last year when I broke Roy Lassiter's record that 100 would mean more to me. It does because it means 10 goals a year over 10 years, and I think that's pretty decent."
Deep into the second half of Saturday's match at Rice-Eccles Stadium, the stage was set for Kreis to reach his personal goal with his side trailing the Kansas City Wizards 3-1.
In the 72nd minute, Kreis waited at the top of the box as second-half substitute Dante Washington served him a knee high ball. Kreis crushed the pass into the upper corner, right into just enough space between goalkeeper Bo Oshoniyi's hand and the corner for No. 100.
"It had to be one of the best goals I've ever taken in this league," said Kreis. "I'm going to be proud of that one for sure, and will be able to look back on that one in video for years to come."
Kries, who spent his first nine years in the league with Dallas before being traded to Real Salt Lake last November, celebrated by doing his patented backflip. Amidst the torrents of red, yellow and blue streamers showering from the stands, Kreis was congratulated by his team.
"To get his 100th career goal on a goal like that one was ridiculous and I hope he wins goal of the year," said teammate Rusty Pierce. "It was phenomenal."
Despite the historic achievement, the end result was dissapointing for RSL who wound up losing 4-2. The defeat was Real Salt Lake's first loss on the Rice-Eccles turf. RSL lost to FC Dallas and the Chicago Fire when grass was in place.
"I know (Jason) wanted to get the 100th goal in a win, so it meant a little more to him," said coach John Ellinger. "I'm glad he got it. It was a great goal. It put us back in it. It would have been nice if we could have helped him out a little bit."
Kreis is familiar with making history throughout his 10-year MLS career. He scored the first goal in RSL history and the first goal in Dallas Burn history -- a strike against the Kansas City Wizards on April 18, 1996, that he previously listed as his most memorable MLS moment.
"[Scoring goal No. 100] is probably the most bittersweet moment of my life right now," said Kreis following the match. "We're going to need to take some positives, and I think we can take that we fought extremely hard to get ourselves back into that game. We had a pretty descent chance, we were causing them a lot of trouble. But in the end we're letting in goals that are extremely too easy."
"It had to be one of the best goals I've ever taken in this league. I'm going to be proud of that one for sure, and will be able to look back on that one in video for years to come."
-- Jason Kreis
Throughout the emotions of an eventful evening, the RSL captain kept perspective on his team, and what they are working towards.
"I'll feel a sense of relief when this team makes the playoffs," said Kreis.
The loss to Kansas City isn't going to help that cause, but as long as Kreis keeps scoring goals it won't hurt their chances.
Now that he's hit 100, what's the next personal goal?
"I'd like to shoot for 150."
Scott McAllister is a contributor to MLSnet.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Soccer or its clubs.