ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (March 30, 2019) -- The Tampa Bay Rowdies extended their unbeaten streak to four matches Saturday night and kept their third clean sheet of the season, but settled for a 0-0 draw against Loudoun United FC at Al Lang Stadium.
Tampa Bay (2-0-2, 8 points) sits in second place in the Eastern Conference after being held scoreless for the first time this season.
"At home, when you dominate and create the chances we created, it's always two points dropped (rather than one point earned,)" Rowdies Head Coach Neill Collins said. "I'm very, very frustrated. I'm sure the players are really frustrated and the fans most of all are frustrated because they come to see the team score goals. We're having a different conversation if we converted our chance in the first half, but we didn't."
Tampa Bay dominated across the board statistically, but couldn't find a way to score on Loudoun (0-1-2, 2 points) goalkeeper Earl Edwards Jr. The Rowdies took 11 shots on the night (three on target) compared to five (one on target) for the visitors.
The Rowdies best scoring chance of the night came in the 37th minute when Leo Fernandes served a ball across the face of goal. Sebastian Guenzatti's first-time finish hit the post and fell into the hands of Edwards Jr. before Antoine Hoppenot could pounce on it.
Tampa Bay could've scored on a few occasions in the second half but just wasn't quite sharp enough to turn a draw into a win.
Collins made three changes to his starting lineup following last week's 1-1 draw on the road against Saint Louis FC. Midfielder Shawn Barry returned to the XI after international duty, and first starts of the year were earned by midfielder Andrew Tinari and forward Antoine Hoppenot.
"I'm a little disappointed," Tinari said. "We could've moved the ball a little quicker in the final third. We got a point, so I can't complain, but going forward we need to be a little sharper and find a way to finish the game."
Rowdies goalkeeper John McCarthy made one save to keep his league-high third clean sheet of the young season.
Tampa Bay will be back at Al Lang Stadium on Saturday, April 6 for the second match of a three-game homestand to take on Hartford Athletic at 7:30 p.m. For tickets, click here.
Rowdies XI (3-5-2): GK John McCarthy; D Tarek Morad, Pape Diakite, Caleb Richards; M Shawn Barry, Zach Steinberger (Leon Taylor 78'), Dom Oduro (Yann Ekra 46'), Andrew Tinari, Leo Fernandes; F Antoine Hoppenot (Juan Tejada 61'), Sebastian Guenzatti (c)
Loudoun United XI (4-4-2): GK Earl Edwards Jr.; D Peabo Doue, Harri Hawkins, Donovan Pines, Akeem Ward; M Noah Pilato (Jack Jean Baptiste 65'), Allexon Saravia, Collin Verfurth, Griffin Yow (Andrew Lubahn 85'); F Shinya Kadono, Kyle Murphy (c) (Orlando Sinclair 78')
Loudoun: Noah Pilato - 16th minute
Tampa Bay: Dom Oduro - 38th minute
Loudoun: Colin Verfurth - 61st minute
Loudoun: Allexon Saravia - 82nd minute