ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (March 17, 2019) — Two games in and the Rowdies are still perfect after a 2-0 win over the Pittsburgh Riverhounds at Al Lang Stadium last night. A total of four teams around the USL Championship have picked up the full six points so far, with three of them in the tight Eastern Conference. Something will have to give next weekend when the Rowdies play also-perfect Saint Louis FC on the road next weekend.
Here’s Three Things from Saturday night…
1. It’s good to be home
It was just one of those nights at Al Lang Stadium when everything feels right. After a long offseason of change for the Rowdies, it was great to welcome everybody back in for a well-deserved party.
A sellout crowd of 7,234 fans celebrated the arrival of a new season in style, willing the Rowdies on to an impressive win. With so much new on the field and at the stadium, it was a special night for all involved.
2. Barry’s comeback
Shawn Barry was the star of the show Saturday night, scoring a goal and adding an assist from the right wing back spot in his home debut.
It was a good moment of redemption for the 28-year old. Last season, while playing with Real Salt Lake, Barry sustained a knee injury in the second match of the season. He would miss more than five months and played only 203 minutes for RSL all season. The second game of this year went much differently.
“It’s been a hard road coming to this. Around this time last year I injured my knee and it wasn’t a great year. I came here looking to get back on the field, get minutes, score goals and get assists. Today it finally happened again and I’m happy for that.”
3. Squeaky clean
The Rowdies kept another clean sheet Saturday night, but that was never really in doubt as Pittsburgh failed to record a shot on target all match. Riverhounds defender Tobi Adewole put a header on the top of crossbar early in the first half, but Pittsburgh hardly threatened after that.
It’s fairly obvious, but if the Rowdies can continue to limit shots on target as well as they have so far, they will be really difficult to beat. Memphis 901 FC managed one shot on target in week one, so Rowdies goalkeeper John McCarthy has two clean sheets to his name despite making just one save in 180 minutes of action.