After a disappointing draw last weekend against Charlotte, the Riverhounds looked to pick up three points against Tampa Bay on Wednesday night. With a goal just before the half, the Riverhounds appeared to be back in their winning ways. Unfortunately, the Rowdies scored in the second half to tie the game, spoiling the night for the Riverhounds and their fans.
Both teams came out with an attacking mindset, swapping runs, but had no clear cut chances. Tampa’s attack early on seemed to confuse the Riverhounds, or at least make them second guess their game plan. This was clear as the Riverhounds kept trying to force runs through the middle, keeping their backs toward the Rowdies goal, and passing back instead of attempting an attack. Any time the Riverhounds did make an attack, it was short lived thanks to multiple Tampa Bay players lying on the pitch with injuries. After a number of these episodes in the first half, Lilley literally called the entire team over to the sideline and talked to them until the player came off the field.
The first shot on goal for either team happened in the 28th minute, when Neco Brett missed a shot. Thanks to even more Tampa Bay players dropping to the pitch, the next sustained attack and shot didn’t occur until the 44th minute when Kenardo Forbes had a nice attmept, but ended up with nothing to show for his efforts. A few minutes later, and just before the whistle blew for the end of the first half, Mouhamed Dabo had a great strike which found the back of the net, putting the Riverhounds up 1-0.
As the second half started, the Riverhounds came out playing a possession focused game. The Rowdies seemed to accept this fate and sit back in front of their net, ensuring the hounds would have to fight if they were to find a second goal. In fact the Rowdies first shot in the second half didn’t occur until the 61st minute. In the 62nd minute, Tommy Vancaeyezeele was called for a foul that resulted in a yellow card (due to accumulation Vancaeyezeele will miss the next game against Indy Eleven). Ten minutes after the penalty the Rowdies had a run in deep. Tampa Bay’s Flemming took a shot from a close and awkward angle as Kirk came out to meet the ball. Kirk made a bad first move, couldn’t recover in time, and the tying goal was the result. The Riverhounds had one last chance as time wound down, but nothing came of it, ending the game in a 1-1 draw.
Mouhamed Dabo’s goal was his first of the season and the first of his professional career.
Next Time out:
The Riverhounds take on Indy Eleven on Wednesday, August 29, at 7 pm.
The Rowdies take on North Carolina FC on Saturday, Sept 1, at 7 pm.