Rowdies Secure NASL Semifinals with 1-1 Draw Against Carolina
The Tampa Bay Rowdies played to a 1-1 draw against Carolina on Saturday night at Al Lang Stadium in Downtown St. Petersburg. With the tie, the Rowdies secured a spot in the NASL Semifinals.
The Rowdies went up 1-0 in the 13th minute, when Andres Arango headed a prefect ball into the top right corner of the net. Midfielder Luke Mulholland picked up his fifth assist of the season, as his corner kick found an open Arango, who scored his first goal of the season. Mulholland now has a goal and two assists in his last two games.
The RailHawks equalized in the 61st minute after midfielder Ty Shipalane scored his fifth goal of the season. His shot took a deflection off of defender Frankie Sanfilippo and went past Rowdies goalkeeper Jeff Attinella. Brian Shriver picked up his third assist of the season.
Carolina had the first chance on goal, when Shriver entered the box and powered a shot from 10 yards out, but Attinella was well positioned and was able to contain the shot.
In the 10th minute, the Rowdies had their first chance of the match, as midfielder Evans Frimpong sent a cross from the right side of the box and forward Mike Ambersley was able to volley it on goal. His shot was saved by Carolina goalkeeper Ray Burse, denying Tampa Bay their second goal of the match.
Tampa bay scored the first goal of the match in the 13th minute, when Arango powered a header into the top right corner of the net, after Mulholland delivered a great corner kick giving the Rowdies the lead.
Arango picked up his fifth yellow card in the 22nd minute and will have to sit out the final match of the regular season against the RailHawks next Saturday.
Entering the 42nd minute, RailHawks midfielder Ty Shipalane was one-on-one with Attinella, but the Rowdies goalkeeper made a diving save to his right to keep the Rowdies in the lead at halftime.
Carolina came out in the second half desperately looking for the tying goal, but Attinella had an excellent half, denying the RailHawks in more than one opportunity.
In the 55th minute, Attinella came up huge in two occasions. Carolina had back to back chances inside the six-yard box, but the Rowdies goalkeeper was able to make a save on the first chance and contain the ensuing shot.
The Rowdies looked to extend the lead in the 58th minute, when forward Carl Cort had a strike from 19 yards out, but Burse was able to contain the shot.
Carolina threatened to tie the game with back-to-back chances in the 59th minute. Midfielder Nick Zimmerman entered the box from the right and powered a shot on goal, but Attinella made a great kick save, sending the ball out for a corner kick. On the ensuing corner kick, defender Kupono low-headed the ball, but Attinella was able to get a hand on it and push it over the goal for another corner kicks.
The RailHawks scored the tying goal in the 61st minute when Shipalane received a pass from Shriver on the left side of the box and took a shot. His strike hit Sanfilippo and trickled in past Attinella.
Rowdies: Andres Arango assisted by Luke Mulholland - 13th minute
Carolina: Ty Shipalane assisted by Brian Shriver - 61st minute
Rowdies: GK Jeff Attinella, D Frankie Sanfilippo (Captain), D JP Rodrigues, D Takuya Yamada, D Andres Arango, M Shane Hill, M Keith Savage (Raphael Cox 75'), M Evans Frimpong (Stuart Campbell 71'), M Luke Mulholland, F Mike Ambersley, F Carl Cort
Carolina RailHawks: GK Ryan Burse, D Jordan Graye, D Henry Kalungi, D Gale Agbossoumonde, D Kupono Low (Captain), M Amir Lowery, M Floyd Franks, M Nick Zimmerman (Matt Luzunaris 61'), M Brian Shriver (Austin Da Luz 86'), F Jason Garey, F Ty Shipalane (Cory Elenio 82')