Minnesota Stars head coach Manny Lagos had just watched his team drop another second-half lead - this time with effectively the last kick of the match - and he's feeling about as frustrated as anyone at this point. "There's a level of frustration right after another game that you think you've won," he said. "It certainly hurts, there's no doubt about it. Just from a team standpoint, the guys have worked hard. I thought tonight we were fighting through it and we were going to get a result, and it just didn't happen. I really didn't feel like oh no, here we go again. I really felt like we were navigating the game, even though they had a couple of close chances."
"A little bit of a breakdown, and next thing you know, we've got another tie."
Speaking about Jamie Watson, who I thought was the Stars' most effective attacking player, Lagos said, "He added another dimension. He's an experienced player, he wants to win, he wants to battle for us. We're excited to have him for this run at the end of the year."
I asked if the fans' traditional heckling of Watson played on anybody's mind, but he hardly needed to consider the question: "Jamie's a pro, he's been around a long time - he can take a lot. That doesn't affect his play." (Side note: Stars fans have traditionally hung the national flag for the nationalities of all players on the Stars' roster over the east stands. With Watson now in the fold, they hung a scuba diving flag above the stands, as well.)
I mentioned the wind several times in my report, as it was howling into the faces of the Stars in the second half, but Lagos wasn't ready to use that as an excuse. "We were aware that the wind was going to hurt us a little bit," he said, "but tactically, we felt like we were in pretty good shape up until the last seven or eight minutes, and that's when things kind of went south."
Ultimately, though, Lagos is sounding the same refrain he's sounded throughout the team's nine-game winless streak. He said, "Tomorrow the sun comes up, and we have to think about how we can try to get better, and try to regroup and come out here and get a result on Tuesday."