Tampa Bay Sports Day

USL: Tampa Bay Rowdies Look to Bounce Back at Home

TAMPA, Fla. – The two top teams in the USL’s Western Conference will head on the road aiming to maintain their current form in two major weekend contests for Week 10 of the 2017 USL regular season, with a 12-game slate continuing what has already been an eventful week. As the regular season completes its first third of the season, a packed middle of the Eastern Conference also features teams looking to make a move.

The weekend kicks off with one of its biggest games as 2016 USL Western Conference champion the Swope Park Rangers host the current undefeated conference leader San Antonio FC in what promises to be an intriguing clash of styles. Real Monarchs SLC will also visit Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2 on Sunday afternoon, while Reno 1868 FC visits Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC aiming to build on a three-game league winning streak. 

The Eastern Conference includes the defending champion hosting the conference’s current leader on Sunday, with the New York Red Bulls II hoping to snap a three-game losing streak when they face the Charleston Battery. The second-place Tampa Bay Rowdies return home after their midweek loss to face Saint Louis FC, which is looking to halt a four-game slide and get back into the playoff positions. 
 
Saturday, May 27
Tampa Bay Rowdies vs. Saint Louis FC (Match Center)
7:30 p.m. ET, Al Lang Stadium
The Tampa Bay Rowdies are looking to bounce back from a midweek defeat as they return home to Al Lang Stadium. Saint Louis, meanwhile, is looking to break a longer dip in form as it returns to action just outside the playoff positions in the Eastern Conference.
 
The Rowdies (6-3-2, 20pts) were handed their third defeat of the season on Wednesday night as the Rochester Rhinos earned a 1-0 win in the USL Game of the Week on ESPN3 at Capelli Sport Stadium. Tampa Bay has only dropped points once in six games so far at home this season, against conference leaders the Charleston Battery, and will be looking to keep the pressure on the side sitting above it in the standings.
 
Saint Louis (3-3-2, 11pts) has lost three of its past four outings to drop to ninth place in the standings, but will be hopeful of getting things back on track after a bye last week. To do so, the side will need its attacking duo of Jose Angulo and Christian Volesky to get back on track, with the side having scored only once in its past four league outings.
 
Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC vs. Reno 1868 FC (Match Center)
8 p.m. ET, Weidner Field
Reno 1868 FC will take its three-game winning streak on the road when it visits Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC, with the visitor having the chance to move past its host with a victory at Weidner Field.
 
Colorado Springs (3-4-4, 13pts) continued its up-and-down season in its last outing when it suffered a 5-2 defeat to Rocky Mountain rival Real Monarchs SLC. The defeat left the Switchbacks winless in their past three games, but they should take some confidence from a comeback 2-2 draw against Reno on April 22 that saw Shane Malcolm score a stoppage-time equalizer when the teams first met.
 
1868 FC (3-3-2, 11pts) has been on a tear since that late letdown, however, winning all three of its subsequent contests by a combined score line of 14-0. Tulsa Roughnecks FC was the most recent side to fall on Wednesday night as Reno earned a 4-0 win at Greater Nevada Field, with USL all-time leading scorer Dane Kelly moving to nine goals this season as one of four different scorers on the night.
 
Sunday, May 28
New York Red Bulls II vs. Charleston Battery (Match Center)
2 p.m. ET, MSU Soccer Park
The New York Red Bulls II will try to bounce back from their first defeat at their new home at MSU Soccer Park when they host current Eastern Conference leaders the Charleston Battery, who will be aiming to take seven points from nine in their northeast road trip.
 
The defending USL Cup champion Red Bulls II (3-5-2, 11pts) have already lost more games than they did a season ago this year, with the club’s three-game losing streak the longest in its history. New York came close to avoiding that fate last Saturday, but squandered a late lead as Ottawa Fury FC scored twice in the final five minutes to take a 4-3 win.
 
Charleston (7-1-2, 23pts) is coming in off a midweek win against Bethlehem Steel FC as Romario Williams scored his eighth goal of the season as the only goal of the game on Thursday at Goodman Stadium. The Battery were one of only two teams to win on the road against the Red Bulls II last season, and will be hoping to repeat that performance to remain on top of the Eastern Conference with one-third of the season complete.