Rowdies finish with another tie against Rhinos

by Gary Shelton on June 11, 2017 · 0 comments

in general, Rowdies

Deshorn Brown attempts a bicycle kick late in the game./STEVEN MUNCIE

Deshorn Brown attempts a bicycle kick late in the game./STEVEN MUNCIE

Sunday, 3 a.m.

There were a lot of bruises. There weren't, however, a lot of goals.

The Tampa Bay Rowdies played to a 1-1 tie with Rochester Saturday night in a testy match, giving up an early goal and being able to capitalize on one afterward. It was Tampa Bay's fifth draw in 14 matches.

“We started the game extremely well and then we made a bad mistake, which led to their first goal,” Rowdies coach Stuart Campbell said. “That happens, but then the guys responded. In the first half, I thought we were excellent

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Joe Cole jumps over a Rochester player./STEVEN MUNCIE

Joe Cole jumps over a Rochester player./STEVEN MUNCIE

and when we play as well as that, we have to go on and win the game. We have to put the game to bed.”

The Rowdies gave up a goal five minutes into the game. They tied it 14 minutes later on a goal by Joe Cole, but they were unable to go ahead.

In the 19th minute, Leo Fernandes fed the ball to left back Marcel Schafer on an overlapping run. Schafer crossed it with his first touch and found Cole sliding past his marker at the near post for an easy finish to even at the match at 1-1.

Martin Paterson manhandles Wal Fall./STEVEN MUNCIE

Martin Paterson manhandles Wal Fall./STEVEN MUNCIE

From there, the game followed a familiar script, with the Rowdies dominating possession and momentum, but not finding a way to break down a bunkered-in team.

Tampa Bay had the ball for 69 percent of the match and out-shot the Rhinos 15-11, but couldn’t find a second goal.

“We didn’t take our chances right at the end,” Cole said. “We’ve got to work on that. It’s not something new we’re facing. We need

Marcel Schafer moves the ball down the field./STEVEN MUNCIE

Marcel Schafer moves the ball down the field./STEVEN MUNCIE

to be better at breaking teams down. … Our goal came from a good passing move and Marcel put in a great ball, so we’ve got to do more of that.”

Pickens made five saves on the night, none bigger than his denial of Graf in the 71st minute.

After a Rowdies turnover at the halfway line, one quick pass led Graf on a 30-yard one-on-one run against Pickens, but the German’s right-footed shot from the top of the box was bettered by a diving save to Pickens’ left-hand side. Brandon Beresford tried to put the rebound in, but Michael Nanchoff made a heroic block before the ball could reach Pickens.

Pickens made another big save in the 83rd minute, keeping a Rhinos free kick from sneaking into the corner of net after it may

Michael Nanchoff tries to signal to his team mates./STEVEN MUNCIE

Michael Nanchoff tries to signal to his team mates./STEVEN MUNCIE

have taken a deflection from the head of Kyle Porter.

The Rowdies cranked up the intensity in the closing minutes but couldn’t manage a winner.

Tampa Bay now heads on the road for three-straight matches, visiting Richmond, Pittsburgh and Charleston in the next three weeks before returning home to host FC Cincinnati on July 6.

Paterson Slides to get the ball away ./STEVEN MUNCIE

Paterson Slides to get the ball away ./STEVEN MUNCIE

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