Kris Tyrpak vs Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2 - October 15, 2016
Nick Smith

Postgame Quotes: Swope Park Rangers 3-0 Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2

Swope Park Rangers head coach Marc Dos Santos

On the team’s Western Conference championship…

We played against a very good team. In the first half of the season, they looked like the best team in the USL. We have to congratulate Alan and Vancouver for what they did this year. Only one team could advance and it had to be decided in the 90 minutes here. Overall, in the 90 minutes, we were the best team. Vancouver had more of the possession, but I think we controlled the game without the ball. We knew what we had to do defensively. We knew that we could counter at any moment and that we would be very dangerous. I think we deserved to be up in the first half. In the second half, we conceded a little bit too much ground but I think we held ourselves well. At the end of the day, for everything these guys have done this year, I think that the club and everyone involved has to be proud of Kansas City and the Swope Park Rangers today.

On the defensive adaptations…

(Tyler) Pasher is a player that, if he keeps his head right and if he sticks to everything he’s learned this year, and he’s matured so much, I think he’s a special player. So having Pasher playing as a left-back, he knows the position well and he plays it well. (Johnny) Grant answered in a fantastic way. It’s not easy. I’ve been telling these guys one thing. We are a team and everybody is important. The collective is more important than the individual. So depending on who’s in or who’s out, the guys always answer in the right way.

On his final home match with the club…

I came here with high expectations for the club and what I would learn from Peter (Vermes), from Kerry (Zavagnin) and from the staff. I’ll never forget everything that has happened this year. I learned a lot. I wanted to learn about the connection between the first and second teams. Kansas City is a special place that I’m never going to forget. You try to leave a good legacy. Some coaches leave a bad one; others leave a good one. I hope this legacy is going to be positive and something that everybody’s going to remember.

Swope Park Rangers captain Christian Duke

On the team’s mentality in the second half…

If they get one goal, they’re back in the game. We wanted to come out strong in the second half and put the game to bed. I think we defended a lot in the second half but that’s one of our strengths.

On bringing another trophy to Kansas City…

The city deserves it. Obviously, this is my home and I had my family here tonight. It’s a pretty humbling experience and I’m just happy that we’re on the right side of the scoreboard.

On the team’s chemistry…

This is a fantastic team. I don’t think I’ve been on a more together team. Everyone wants to fight for each other. Everyone wants to leave all their blood and sweat on the field. Everyone is ready for this opportunity. Marc Dos Santos does a great job and Nikola (Popovic) makes sure everyone is prepared. He kept on saying throughout the whole year, ‘You guys never know when you’ll step in. You’ve got to be ready for the opportunity.’ These young guys are stepping up.

On head coach Marc Dos Santos…

Marc has been fantastic. I couldn't have asked for a better leader and coach in the first year of the organization. He's done a great job in making sure everyone is ready for the opportunity.

Swope Park Rangers forward Kris Tyrpak

On scoring the first two goals…

I was in the right place at the right time. Everybody did the hard work for me, so kudos to those guys. We didn’t play the greatest for the first 15 minutes but the goal turned the tide for us and helped give us a little confidence. That was huge for us.

On the team’s approach in the second half...

A 2-0 lead is always the most dangerous to have in a game. At halftime, Marc was telling us, ‘Don’t let them breathe. Don’t let them get any momentum going forward.’ I think we did that. We kept the shutout.

On the team’s postseason run…

This is the first time I’ve been in the playoffs professionally. To do this in the conference finals is a pretty big deal for me.

On the team’s performance…

Words can’t express how proud I am. First, we’ve faced injuries all year. We had two red cards in the last game; a red card in this game. We persevered.

Swope Park Rangers forward Dane Kelly

On his second goal of the playoffs…

Once I struck it, I knew it was going in. I stood there and watched it go in.

On helping the team reach the USL Cup Final…

As a player, everyone is looking toward you to do your best every time. Tonight wasn’t my best game but I got a goal that made a difference. That’s always good.

On the team’s chemistry…

I can’t even explain it. This team, from three months ago in 13th place to winning the Western Conference, it’s so exciting. I’m proud to call these guys my teammates.

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