ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – A late goal by Evan Conway lifted San Diego Loyal SC to a thrilling 3-2 victory against the Tampa Bay Rowdies on Saturday night at Al Lang Stadium as the visitors rallied from a halftime deficit to earn all three points on the road.
The game opened brightly but it wasn’t until the 17th minute when SD Loyal had the first good look on goal as Alejandro Guido spun out of pressure near the top of the penalty area to send a low shot on target that was saved. Two minutes later, the visitors took the lead as Nick Moon controlled a long ball upfield well on the left flank and after juking past his marker near the top-left edge of the penalty area curled a beautiful finish to the top-right corner of the net.
The Rowdies hit back quickly as Jake LaCava jumped in to take control after a misplayed pass in the San Diego half and quickly drove forward to fire a shot from the left side of the penalty area into the top-right corner of the net. LaCava went close again five minutes before the break with a rising shot that was deflected over the crossbar, but off the ensuing corner kick the delivery from the left deflected inside the penalty area for Sebastian Guenzatti to fire home a turning volley from close range for his first goal of the season.
The Rowdies had a chance to add a third just before the hour-mark as a good challenge in the San Diego half put Kyle Greig in on goal only for his shot to go just over the crossbar, but with 15 minutes to go the visitors drew level as Darius Vassell outmuscled his marker on the right side and cut back a cross for Jack Blake to send home a first-time finish into the left corner of the net. The visitors then grabbed all three points with two minutes to go as on a counterattack, Tumi Moshobane released Conway into space on the left, and his low shot to the near post found its way home to put San Diego ahead, and on its way to victory.
USLChampionship.com Player of the Match
Nick Moon, San Diego Loyal SC – Moon delivered a highlight reel goal to open the scoring and was effective throughout, recording two shots and one chance created while completing 21 of 24 passes overall.
SD – Nick Moon (Elijah Martin) 19’
TBR – Jake LaCava 21’
TBR – Sebastian Guenzatti 41’
SD – Jack Blake (Darius Vassell) 75’
SD – Evan Conway (Tumi Moshobane) 88’