Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Rowdies offense catches up to defense

ST. PETERSBURG — Tampa Bay took control from the very beginning of Saturday's match against Harrisburg and never let up, scoring an early goal after one of many first-half corner kicks. What seemed mercilessly out of reach for much of the game, though, was the insurance goal that the Rowdies have grown accustomed to scoring.

Related News/Archive

Against a squad that hasn't won since July 15, the Rowdies had five shots in the box and seven corner kicks before the break. But it wasn't until Martin Paterson headed a Marcel Schafer cross into the net in the 73rd minute that the Rowdies could breathe a little easier, and Walter Restrepo scored another in the final minutes to help the Rowdies cruise to a 3-0 victory.

The shutout was the third straight for the Rowdies, and it gave the crowd of 5,619 at Al Lang Stadium one more reason to celebrate goalkeeper Matt Pickens, who made his 100th appearance.

"The guys made it easy for us, and we're just turning in the right direction," Pickens said. "We don't want to count our chickens before they hatch, but we're doing all the things right. We're playing very clean games right now, and we're just trying to keep it going."

Fresh off back-to-back 2-0 victories, the Rowdies began the game with plenty of momentum, but misses and deflections kept them from scoring, and midfielder Joe Cole left the game in the seventh minute with a back injury. In the 15th minute, defender Neill Collins broke through, scoring his second goal of the season after a Rowdies corner kick.

"I take a lot of pride in keeping a clean sheet," Collins said, "but ask any professional footballer, scoring a goal is the best feeling. You just never know when it's going to come again."

The Rowdies (10-5-7), who finished with nine corner kicks to Harrisburg's two, almost scored on another in the 43rd minute, but it was grabbed out of the air by goalkeeper Brandon Miller.

After the break there were even more close calls. A Collins header went wide and a rocket from Michael Nanchoff missed the outside post by inches. A solid outing from Tampa Bay's defense secured the one-goal lead until Paterson's and Restrepo's strikes.

"(Restrepo) promised me that (Friday), actually. We were talking after practice. … He said 'I'm going to score today,' " Rowdies coach Stuart Campbell said. "I reminded him of that before we went on, and he duly obliged."

Rowdies offense catches up to defense 08/05/17 [Last modified: Saturday, August 5, 2017 11:22pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Four questions the Lightning still has to answer

    Lightning Strikes

    FORT LAUDERDALE — The Lightning made its biggest round of cuts Monday, with some of the big-named prospects heading out.

    Tampa Bay Lightning forward Steven Stamkos (91) looks on from the bench during a shift change at Lightning hockey training camp in Brandon on Monday (09/18/17). In background on right is Nikita Kucherov (86). DIRK SHADD   |   Times  

  2. Nine Florida football players, 62 felony complaints in fraud scandal

    College

    GAINESVILLE — The fraud scandal that has engulfed the University of Florida's nationally ranked football team for weeks exploded Monday with the first detailed accounts of criminal accusations that threaten to derail the Gators' season.

    Florida Gators wide receiver Antonio Callaway (81) runs the ball during the Outback Bowl in January at Raymond James Stadium. [CHARLIE KAIJO   |   Times]
  3. Where Rays shortstop Matt Duffy's lost season leads

    The Heater

    BRADENTON — In a perfect world Matt Duffy would have been in New York on Monday with his Rays teammates enjoying the final off day of the year. Instead, he was on Field 4 at Pirate City on a sweltering afternoon, trying to restart his season.

    Rays shortstop Matt Duffy plays in his first game (since rehab was aborted) with the club's instructional league on Monday at the Pirate City baseball field and spring training complex in Bradenton [DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD  |  Times]
  4. Vinny Lecavalier's jersey retirement will be another classic Vinny moment

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — He was the face of the franchise. He was taken first overall in the 1998 NHL Draft by a franchise at the bottom. Art Williams, the nutty Tampa Bay Lightning owner at the time, proclaimed the 18-year-old from Ile Bizard, a Montreal borough, "the Michael Jordan of hockey."

    Vincent Lecavalier makes a break for the net while playing an exhibition game on Sunday (9/24/17) with the 2017 U.S. Women???‚??„?s National Team at Amalie Arena in Tampa. Lecavalier was the captain of the Tampa Bay Lightning for the 2000???‚??€œ2001 season and between the 2008???‚??€œ2013 and spent his first 14 NHL seasons with the Tampa Bay Lightning before signing with the Philadelphia Flyers.
  5. Rays' Blake Snell erasing memories of his poor start

    The Heater

    NEW YORK — As Blake Snell strides up the mound at Yankee Stadium Tuesday night with an 10-game unbeaten streak, doesn't the miserable start to his sophomore season, when he was winless in eight starts and got demoted to Triple-A, seem like a long time ago?

    To him, too.

    Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Blake Snell (4) in the dugout during the fourth inning of the game between the Chicago Cubs and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2017. WILL VRAGOVIC   |   Times