Rowdies drop preseason game to Montreal, 2-1

by Gary Shelton on February 18, 2018 · 0 comments

in general, Rowdies

Jochen Graf goes airborne to score the first Rowdies goal./CARMEN MANDATO

Jochen Graf goes airborne to score the first Rowdies goal./CARMEN MANDATO

Sunday, 2 a.m.

This is why they call them preseason games.

The Tampa Bay Rowdies are off to a bit of a slow start after losing a 2-1 game to the Montreal Impact on Saturday. A week earlier, the team had lost 1-0 in a practice game against Cincinnati.

The Rowdies trailed 1-0 at the break before pulling even in the 75th minute through a Jochen Graf goal, but the lead was short-lived as Montreal’s Ignacio Piatti scored the game-winner just two minutes later.

Graf's goal was the first of the season for the Rowdies./CARMEN MANDATO

Graf's goal was the first of the season for the Rowdies./CARMEN MANDATO

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Hristov missed on a penalty kick./CARMEN MANDATO

Hristov missed on a penalty kick./CARMEN MANDATO

"I thought we performed really well against a really good team,” Rowdies coach Stuart Campbell said. “We created quite a few chances and limited them to very few chances against us. With the ball we looked very good and without it we looked nice and solid. That’s what preseason is all about, testing yourself against good opposition like Montreal.”

Jack Blake moves the ball for the Rowdies./CARMEN MANDATO

Jack Blake moves the ball for the Rowdies./CARMEN MANDATO

Saturday night's game will be remembered for close calls.

In the 56th minute, Junior Flemmings  beat his defender and beat goalkeeper Evan Bush. He put a shot on target, but Petraso recovered  in time for a goal line  clearance.

Less than a minute later, Michael Nanchoff was fouled inside the box and the Rowdies were awarded a penalty kick. Georgi Hristov missed the shot, keeping the Impact ahead.

The Rowdies waited until  the 75th minute when Graf collected a pass from Sebastian Guenzatti and delicately lifted the ball over an onrushing Bush to pull Tampa Bay back into the match at 1-1.

The tie was short-lived, though, as Piatti helped Montreal to a win with a smooth finish just two minutes later.

Tampa Bay plays against the Philadelphia Union at Al Lang Stadium in another preseason game next Saturday. The game begins at 7:30 following a match between Montreal and New York City FC.

Flemmings chases after a loose ball for Tampa Bay./CARMEN MANDATO

Flemmings chases after a loose ball for Tampa Bay./CARMEN MANDATO

 

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