Kreis out for season
Injury ends hope of breaking record this yearPosted: Friday August 15, 2003 5:57 PM
Updated: Friday August 15, 2003 6:02 PM
DALLAS (AP) -- A knee injury not only put Dallas Burn forward Jason Kreis out for the season, it put on hold his chances to break the Major League Soccer all-time leading goal scorer record.
Kreis was three goals shy of breaking Roy Lassiter's record of 88 goals when he was injured Wednesday night in a home game against the San Jose Earthquakes.
The word came Thursday that Kreis was out for the season with a torn ACL tear in his left knee.
"Obviously, I’m distraught and extremely disappointed,” Kreis told the Dallas Morning News. “It’s complete depression, to be completely honest.”
Kreis, 30, didn't return a phone call to The Associated Press on Friday, but his coach said the injury sets back Kreis and the floundering team.
Dallas, currently 3-12-4, has lost its last four matches, including the 3-0 lopsided loss to San Jose. The team hasn't scored a goal in 340 minutes of play.
"We'll have to find somebody else to step up. That's the only answer," Dallas coach Mike Jeffries said.
Earlier this week, Kreis said he wasn't hung up on beating the record, anyway.
"I've been focused on doing everything I can for the team, so I haven't been able to think too much about individual accomplishments," he said.
Kreis was on a scoring streak earlier this year, putting away 13 goals in eight exhibition games. Early in the regular season, Kreis scored a goal at least every other game.
But since converting on a penalty kick in a 3-1 loss to D.C. United on July 2, Kreis has found himself stalled in a scoring drought.
"To be honest it's been a very precarious situation for us this year because our team is doing so poorly," he said.
Jeffries said Kreis might have broken the record earlier if he had been more selfish.
"We've been in the situation where a lot of guys have tried to sacrifice to make things work for us. He's one of those guys so maybe it's been harder to score goals," he said.
Kreis said over the last five or six games, he dropped off and took more of a midfield role to help lead the team and "show the guys around me what it takes" to win games.
"It has meant a decline in opportunities in front of the goal," Kreis said. "I've been trying to help my team creating attacking situations."
Kreis is the sole remaining member of Dallas' original team. He scored the Burn's first goal eight years ago in the MLS's inaugural season.
Jeffries said he's seen Kreis mature as a player and team leader, and he believes Kreis will eventually make the record books.
"He works hard, he consistent, he's good in front of the goal. He has a knack for being a finisher," he said.
Kreis, who grew up in Omaha, Neb., said while he would like to break the record, he has a higher goal.
"One that looms large is to win a championship," he said.
Jeffries said Kreis may undergo knee surgery as early as next week. Meanwhile, the Burn will play Kansas City Saturday night without him.
"We're trying to avoid the 'when it rains, it pours' mentality and get out and fight the rest of the season," he said.