Tampa Bay Rowdies at VSI Tampa Bay FC (USL PRO – Third Division)
100th Edition of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup (#USOC100)
Tuesday, May 21 at 7:30 p.m. ET
Location: Plant City Stadium, Plant City, Fla.
Follow us for live updates on Twitter at @RowdiesSoccer.
About the U.S. Open Cup:
The 2013 tournament features 68 teams, an increase from the 64 that competed last year, marking the largest field in the modern era (1995-present). This year also marks the second-consecutive year in which all U.S.-based Division I, II and III teams will participate in the tournament proper: 16 from Major League Soccer, six from the North American Soccer League and 12 from USL PRO. All Division II clubs and eight of the Division III sides will enter the competition in the second round. Division I teams receive a bye to the third round.
If matches end in a tie after the 90 minutes of regulations, two 15-minute halves will determine the team that will advance to the third round. If the score is still tied after extra time, the match will be decided with a penalty shootout.
The Tampa Bay Rowdies earned their third straight away victory on Saturday afternoon, defeating Minnesota United FC 3-2 at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome. After Tampa Bay saw their lead disappear twice, midfielder Keith Savage drilled home the game-winner with a shot inside the box in the 90th minute. With the win, the Rowdies have 11 points this season and are now tied for first place in the NASL standings with Carolina.
Midfielder Shane Hill had originally given the Rowdies the lead in the dying moments of the first half, but Minnesota would level it thanks to a goal by Michael Reed in the 54th minute. On the ensuing play midfielder Luke Mulholland scored his fourth goal of the season putting the Rowdies up 2-1. That lead would hold for 10 minutes, before United FC’s Bracalello’s tied things up at 2-2. The Rowdies went ahead in the 90th minute thanks to Keith Savage who scored the final goal of the night.
With Mulholland’s goal, he now leads the team with four goals and 10 points this season. His 21 shots lead the NASL, while his four goals are tied for second in the league. Alongside Mulholland, forward Georgi Hristov is second on the team with seven points, including two goals and three assists.
Rowdies Head Coach Ricky Hill
"These cup games are very special as it could be one game and you’re out if you lose. The win on Saturday really gave our squad an extra push forward looking ahead to tomorrow night’s match. It will be our first Tuesday night match of the season and at this morning’s practice I emphasized how we need to concentrate on playing the ball in a smart manner. We plan to make a great run in the U.S. Open Cup and tomorrow night is our first step to reach that goal.”
If the Rowdies come away victorious from their Second Round U.S. Open Cup match, they will host Major League Soccer's Seattle Sounders FC on Wednesday, May 29 at 7:30 p.m. at Al Lang Stadium in downtown St. Petersburg.
The Rowdies will host Minnesota on Saturday, May 25 at Al Lang Stadium. For information on 2013 season tickets or individual tickets contact the front office at 813-287-1539 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Don't forget this Saturday's match against United FC is Military Appreciation Night, where any fan with a Valid Military I.D. will receive a free ticket to the match. (Limited availability and one (1) ticket per I.D.)