05242017_ROCvsTBR-9Thursday, 1 a.m.

The hot streak of the Tampa Bay Rowdies came to an end Wednesday night as the team played its fourth game in 12 days.

The Rowdies (6-3-2) lost a 1-0 game to the Rochester Rhinos.

The Rhinos’ Wal Fall scored the only goal of the match in the 27th minute, putting in his own rebound after Tampa Bay goalkeeper Matt Pickens made the initial save.

“We’ve been on a real good run of late and it’s disappointing it’s come to an end tonight,” Rowdies coach Stuart Campbell said. “I think the way we started the game cost us. We started the game too slow. Their first shot on goal they managed to get a goal ahead and it was hard for us to claw back.”

The Rowdies had several players who got the night off due to the heavy schedule, including star Joe Cole.

“I think it was a game of very few chances,” Campbell said. “Neither team created that many clear-cut chances. Off the top of my head, I can think of only one clear-cut chance for us, when (Martin Paterson) couldn’t direct a header in the goal.”

Campbell said fatigue didn’t get the best of Tampa Bay on Wednesday night.

“We’re on a long stretch of games, but I don’t think that played a factor tonight,” Campbell said. “I think the way we moved the ball, we looked really fit and really strong, even in the final minutes when we pressed and pressed for the equalizer.”

It was a staunch defensive performance for the Rowdies, not allowing a shot on except for those few seconds that created the goal, but the offensive unit was not on the same page. Martin Paterson had Tampa Bay’s best offensive chance of the night in the 76th minute, heading a cross from the left wing just wide of target.

“It’s very disappointing to lost tonight,” Rowdies center back Neill Collins said. “The manner of the defeat was probably the most disappointing thing. We came here with good intentions, but never quite got going in the first half. … I don’t think it was much of a game, in terms of quality of football. We  tried to pass the ball in the second half, but couldn’t break them down. Credit to them, they were very well organized.”

Tampa Bay center back Damion Lowe, who has played every minutes of the Rowdies’ 12 matches this season in all competitions, received his fifth yellow card of the year in the second half, meaning he’ll be suspended from the Rowdies’ next match.

The Rowdies return home to face Saint Louis FC at Al Lang Stadium on Saturday, May 27.


Another Super Bowl heads to Tampa

by Gary Shelton on May 24, 2017 · 6 comments

in NFL, Tampa Bay Bucs

Wednesday, 4 a.m.

You probably won't get to the game. A ticket costs a fortune, and watching it at home is free.

You won't be invited the parties, the ones where the guy who once played Leonard's cousin on the Big Bang Theory is singing.

You won't spot the celebrities. You won't go to Media Day, unless you're a guy who likes to wear wedding dresses. You won't give advice to the underdog coach. You won't vote for the Hall of Fame. Unless you count ordering from Papa John's, you won't hang out with the star quarterback.

Except for that, yeah, you're probably thrilled to death that the Super Bowl is coming back to Tampa. Eventually.

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Souza strikes out with bases loaded./CARMEN MANDATO

Wednesday, 2 a.m.

Stop me if you've heard this one before.

The Rays' offense has gone dark, but late in the game, the team mounts a rally. The bases are loaded with one out. And the Rays strike out. And strike out again. And leave three runners stranded. And lose as they waste a solid pitching performance.

Sound familiar?

The Rays went “ditto” Tuesday night, leaving a victory stranded on base. This time, Tampa Bay lost 4-0 to the Los Angeles Angels.

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Evans led the league in first downs last  year./TRAVIS PENDERGRASS

Evans led the league in first downs last year./TRAVIS PENDERGRASS

Tuesday, 4 a.m.

The best combos come in pairs. Batman and Robin. Starsky and Hutch. Simon and Garfunkel. Ben and Jerry.

They play off each other, and they make each other better. Laurel and Hardy. Sears and Roebuck. Penn and Teller. Tom and Jerry. Waldorf and Statler.

On days when one isn't at the top of his game, the other takes over, until the lines between hero and sidekick are blurred. Lennon and McCartney. Bert and Ernie. Bonnie and Clyde. Sam and Dave.

It is with that in mind that the Tampa Bay Bucs bring you that fun duo of Mike Evans and DeSean Jackson, stars in

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Walks lead to another Rays’ loss

May 23, 2017 general

TUESDAY, 2 a.m. Another day, another bullpen. And, as it turned out, another loss. The Rays continued to struggle against the relievers of the American League in a 3-2 loss to the Angels Monday night. The Rays scored both of their runs – on three hits – in the first inning Monday; they were held […]

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Diving catch ruins Rays’ chance of comeback

May 22, 2017 general

Monday, 4 a.m. Sometimes, the judgment goes the wrong way. Sometimes, the guys the fans aren’t cheering for steal the game with an incredible catch. Sometimes, the comeback goes away. It was that way Sunday, when Aaron Judge of the New York Yankees – a spectacular player, by the way — made a diving catch […]

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May 21, 2017 general

Photo editor Jeff King wore an interesting shirt to the Rays’ game on Saturday afternoon.

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Random thoughts: How about a bad Dad confab?

May 21, 2017 general

Sunday, 4 a.m. Can anyone else imagine a Father’s Day panel with LaVar Ball, Richard Williams, Jim Pierce and Marv Marinovich? Why don’t we have a tournament to see who can embarrass their kids the most? – What do you know? Always Dreaming fell asleep. – For his next act, Joe Girardi will perform the […]

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Dickerson continues to hit as Rays win again

May 21, 2017 general

Sunday, 2 a.m. The way upward in the American League East is fairly easy for the Tampa Bay Rays. Just follow Corey Dickerson. Dickerson continued to be one of the league’s best hitters Sunday, driving two balls out of the park in a 9-5 victory over the New York Yankees. Dickerson took over the league […]

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Ask Gary: The Rays trade away others, too

May 20, 2017 general

(Each week, the readers take over GarySheltonsports.com and play Ask Gary. They send in a question, or a couple, on Thursday night or Friday morning and we all talk about the world of sports.  Think of it as a radio show where you don’t have to be on hold. Join us and ask a question, make a comment […]

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