ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (August 20, 2017) — For the second straight match, the Tampa Bay Rowdies conceded an early goal, but showed great spirit to equalize quickly. The result was a 1-1 draw against the Ottawa Fury FC on a passionate but frustrating night at Al Lang Stadium.
Here’s Three Things from the match...
1. Georgi in the groove
Georgi Hristov took sole possession of the Rowdies’ scoring lead with his goal Saturday night, his eighth of the season. The goal was Hristov’s second in as many matches.
It could be proof a resurgence in the Bulgarian’s form after a lengthy scoring drought in the early summer months. Hristov started the season in blistering form, scoring in each of the Rowdies’ first three months, but then the pace slowed down.
After converting a penalty kick on June 4 in a match against the Charlotte Independence, Hristov then played nine matches (more than two months) without scoring a goal. It’s not that he wasn’t contributing, he was just missing the end product.
The spell ended with his goal in Saint Louis last weekend and now with another goal this weekend, Hristov should feel confident of his ability to close the season in style.
2. A great crowd
A crowd of 6,710 fans came to the Rowdies on Saturday, providing a fantastic atmosphere for the home team to play in. It was the Rowdies’ fifth crowd of more than 6,000 this season and the largest since opening day against Orlando City B.
"The atmosphere tonight was unbelievable,” Tampa Bay Rowdies said. “The supporters, they were absolutely fantastic."
While the Rowdies fell short of picking up their 10th home win of the season, they did extend their home unbeaten streak to nine matches in league play, 10 in all competitions. The Modern Era club record for longest unbeaten streak at home is 12 matches.
3. Heading into a bye week
The Rowdies have next weekend off to regroup for the push to the playoffs. Their next match is Saturday, September 2 on the road against the New York Red Bulls II, the opening match of a three-game road swing that will also include visits to Harrisburg and Bethlehem.
It is the Rowdies’ first week without a game since the season kicked off in March and offers a well-earned chance to reset things.