The Tampa Bay Rowdies enter Saturday's match against the San Antonio Scorpions at Al Lang Stadium in St. Petersburg with a two-game winning streak to start the NASL fall season. Georgi Hristov has been instrumental in both wins, scoring game-changing goals in each match.
"Our confidence is high and we're looking to extend our little unbeaten run," Rowdies coach Ricky Hill said.
The Rowdies won their match on July 12 at home after trailing Atlanta 2-0 at halftime when Casey Townsend and Hristov scored goals mid-way through the second half. Hristov then won it for the Rowdies on a diving header in stoppage time.
Last Saturday in Indianapolis, the Rowdies fell behind 1-0 in the first half against the Indy Eleven, but Townsend evened things with a goal in the 38th minute. Hristov, who earned NASL Player of the Week for his Week 1 performance, again played hero when he scored in the 89th minute, silencing a hostile sellout crowd at Michael A. Carroll Stadium.
San Antonio, which finished the spring season in 3rd place with 17 points, arrive in St. Petersburg sitting atop the NASL standings for the fall season after garnering three consecutive victories, topping the New York Cosmos 3-1 in New York and gathering a pair of 2-0 wins at home over the Fort Lauderdale Strikers and the Carolina RailHawks.
Gates for Saturday's 7:30 p.m. match open at 6 p.m. with the first 2,500 fans receiving a limited edition Rowdies defender Blake Wagner face-on-a-stick give-away. From the opening of the gates until kickoff, fans 21-and-over will be able to purchase Budweiser and Bud Light for 2-for-1 prices.
The Rowdies announced Friday the signing of Jamaican midfielder Ricardo Morris. Morris, 21, most recently played for Portmore United FC in the Jamaican Red Stripe Premier League, where he made 65 appearances. Morris, who played for the Jamaican U-20 and U-23 teams, made his senior international debut in a 2-0 friendly win over Barbados on March 3. Morris spent time with the Rowdies as a trialist during the NASL mid-season break, providing an assist on Townsend's goal in a win over the Strikers and an assist on Hristov's goal in the Orlando City match.
Tampa Bay: 2-0-0, 6 points, NASL Fall season; 4-4-3, 16 points, NASL combined season
San Antonio: 3-0-0, 9 points, NASL Fall season; 8-2-2, 26 points, NASL combined season
For more information, visit: rowdiessoccer.com.