Tampa Bay Sports Day

NASL: Rowdies Lead Before Omar Gordon Ties Contest

Photo by Trevor Ruszkowski/Indy Eleven

The Tampa Bay Rowdies led before Indy forward Omar Gordon tied the game at 1-1. The New York Cosmos traveled to South Florida and played to a spirited draw against the Fort Lauderdale Strikers in Week 10 of the North American Soccer League (NASL) Fall Season on Saturday night.

The first-place Cosmos increased their lead in the Fall Season Standings to three points over FC Edmonton. The Eddies, who have two games in hand on New York, battled to a draw against Ottawa Fury FC on Friday night, overcoming a two-goal deficit in the process. The Cosmos also lead the Eddies in the Combined Standings with a four-point advantage. Indy Eleven preserved its unbeaten home record on Saturday night.

Minnesota earned its first victory after three straight draws when striker Christian Ramirez added to his league-leading goal total with his 14th of the year in the Loons’ 1-0 win against visiting Rayo OKC.

Elsewhere on Saturaday night, Miami FC went to Puerto Rico and came away with an impressive 3-0 victory. Alessandro Nesta’s side is now unbeaten in four games and remain in striking distance of first place. In Cary, N.C., the Carolina RailHawks nipped Jacksonville Armada FC, 1-0, thanks to a goal from midfielder Tiyi Shipalane.

Indy Eleven 1, Tampa Bay Rowdies 1

Indy Eleven kept its unbeaten home record intact, extending it to 14 games dating back to last year, in a 1-1 draw against the Tampa Bay Rowdies at Carroll Stadium on Saturday night.

Tampa Bay (3-3-6, 12) took a 1-0 lead in the 29th minute when Joe Cole’s free kick found Justin Chavez at the Indy (6-3-4, 21) far post. The Eleven got even in the 34th minute when Omar Gordon scored his first goal since late May, smashing home a bouncing ball after some nice dribbling work through the penalty area.

The Eleven, this year’s Spring Season Champion, has taken only two points in its last four games.

New York Cosmos 0, Fort Lauderdale Strikers 0

The New York Cosmos extended their unbeaten streak to seven games and increased their lead atop the Fall Season Standings, picking up a point in a draw against the Fort Lauderdale Strikers at Central Broward Stadium on Saturday night.

U.S. youth international Alexis Velela made his professional debut for the Cosmos when an injury forced Ayoze from the game late in the first half. Fort Lauderdale (3-4-5, 13) is now unbeaten in its last five games.

Cosmos (8-3-2, 27) midfielder Ruben Bover had perhaps the best chance of the night. In the 72nd minute, some nifty footwork allowed him to walk in on Bruno, but his shot was parried away. The Brazilian goalkeeper had eight saves for the Strikers.

Miami FC 3, Puerto Rico FC 0

Miami FC continued its torrid pace, extending its unbeaten streak to four games with an emphatic victory over Puerto Rico FC at Juan Ramón Loubriel Stadium on Saturday night.

Jonny Steele returned – after sustaining what appeared to be a serious injury a few weeks ago – to give Miami FC (5-4-2, 19) the lead in the 14th minute. His left-footed laser, after a pass from Jonathan Borrajo, beat Puerto Rico (1-5-6, 8) goalkeeper Trevor Spangenberg.

Miami FC doubled the lead when Dario Cvitanich scored his seventh goal of the season on a shot from an acute angle from a through ball by Rhett Bernstein in the 54th minute. Kwadwo Poku iced the game with a goal three minutes from full time.

Puerto Rico FC is winless in its last seven games, but plays its next three at home. Miami has played two fewer games than New York, Indy, and Minnesota and has an unbeaten record on the road (3-3-0) in the Fall Season.

Carolina RailHawks 1, Jacksonville Armada FC 0

The Carolina RailHawks rebounded after a difficult game last week to hold off Jacksonville Armada FC in a 1-0 win at WakeMed Soccer Park on Saturday night.

Tiyi Shipalane gave Carolina (4-3-4, 15) the lead two minutes before halftime, brilliantly chipping a terrific lead pass from Nazmi Albadawi over the head of Jacksonville Armada FC (2-4-6, 10) goalkeeper Sean Lewis. Albadawi was dangerous all night as he orchestrated the Carolina attack. The RailHawks are now unbeaten in their last seven games at home.

Minnesota United 1, Rayo OKC 0

Christian Ramirez scored his league-leading 14th goal of the year and Minnesota won after playing to three straight draws, defeating Rayo OKC at NSC Stadium on Saturday night.

Ramirez scored just before halftime to give Minnesota (5-5-3, 20) a 1-0 lead over visiting Rayo OKC (3-4-5, 13). Ramirez skillfully turned on a headed pass from Jamie Watson. It was his first goal since late July.

The loss was the fourth straight for Rayo OKC, which came close to scoring the equalizer on a few occasions in the game’s dying moments.

Ottawa Fury FC 2, FC Edmonton 2

FC Edmonton battled back from a two-goal deficit on Daryl Fordyce’s double and played Ottawa Fury FC to a deadlock in a Canadian Derby at TD Place on Friday night. The Eddies extended their unbeaten streak to seven games and Fury FC ran its unbeaten string to three.

Ottawa Fury FC (3-3-6, 12) took advantage of Papé Diakite’s miskick on an attempted backpass to score the opening goal in the game’s second minute. Tommy Stewart pounced on the ball and powered it past FC Edmonton (7-3-1, 24) goalkeeper Matt VanOekel.

Stewart was taken down in the penalty area by Albert Watson in the 17th minute. The spot kick by Ryan Williams was stopped by VanOekel on a dive to his left, but the Eddies were called for encroachment before the ball was played. Williams got another chance, but again VanOekel made the save, this time to his right.

Maxim Tissot pounced on the rebound from a Stewart shot to make it 2-0 in the 36th minute. It was Tissot’s first goal for Ottawa. The Eddies would cut the deficit in half three minutes before halftime as Fordyce headed Sainey Nyassi’s corner kick past goalkeeper Romuald Peiser.

Fordyce scored again to tie the score in the 62nd minute, converting a long, pinpoint pass from Shawn Nicklaw with a right-footed shot that eluded Peiser.

Fury FC’s early score ended the Eddies’ shutout streak that stretched over seven games and encompassed 535 minutes. FC Edmonton previously allowed only 10 goals in 20 NASL games.