ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (JULY 4, 2011) – The Fort Lauderdale Strikers (3-8-3) had their seven game unbeaten streak snapped by FC Tampa Bay (4-5-5) with a 4-2 loss at Al Lang Stadium on July 4. After an evenly played first half, FC Tampa Bay scored three second half goals against the NASL leader in goals against average (GAA) Matt Glaeser. The player of the game for FC Tampa Bay was Pascal Millien with a goal and two assists in a game which saw a total of six goals scored. The win puts FC Tampa Bay in a tie with the Strikers for fifth place in the NASL standings.
“We got the (first) goal back and got into halftime,” said head coach Daryl Shore. “To win a game you have to earn it and we gave the game away by allowing four goals.”
The early action of the game was dominated by FC Tampa Bay. In the 15th minute, on their third corner kick, FC Tampa Bay’s Pascal Millien sent a high ball toward the center of the area and defender Andres Arango headed it past Strikers goalkeeper Matt Glaeser for his first goal of the season.
The game was suspended in minute 31 due to lightning in the area and play resumed after a 59 minute delay.
When the game was restarted, the Strikers wasted no time as David Santamaria’s shot in the 35th minute had to be saved by FC Tampa Bay’s Jeff Attinella.
In the 37th minute, an FC Tampa Bay handball in the penalty area by Kwame Watson-Siriboe was called and the Strikers were awarded a penalty kick. Fort Lauderdale’s Eduardo Coudet stepped to the penalty spot and shot low and left to score his sixth goal of the season and tie the game at 1-1.
The second half’s first goal came at the 55 minute mark when FC Tampa Bay’s Pascal Millien took a pass from Tsuyoshi Yoshitake and slotted home a left-footed shot past Glaeser to put Tampa Bay up 2-1.
A minute later the Strikers had two chances to equalize when Abe Thompson’s point blank shot was saved by Attinella. Then on the ensuing corner kick, the Strikers Cristian Arrieta connected on a header that bounced off the post and was cleared by FC Tampa Bay.
FC Tampa Bay threatened to put the game out of reach when Pascal Millien drove in on net and connected with Aaron King for Tampa Bay’s third goal in the 63rd minute.
Just five minutes later in the 68th minute, the Strikers Eduardo Coudet found a streaking Mike Palacio who dribbled past two Tampa Bay defenders and scored from just outside the 18-yard-box to make the score 3-2 and bring the Strikers to within a goal.
In the 71st minute, on an initial pass from Pascal Millien, FC Tampa Bay’s Aaron King found Mike Ambersley who scored Tampa Bay’s fourth goal of the night and his seventh of the year.
The Strikers are now tied with FC Tampa Bay at 17 points on the season and are tied for fifth place in the NASL standings.
The Strikers return home to face the Atlanta Silverbacks at Lockhart Stadium on Saturday, July 9, at 7:30p.m. All Strikers games are streamed live online at STRIKERS.com. Tickets are available by calling (954) 606-0400 or by going to STRIKERS.com. Follow the Strikers on facebook and twitter @FTLStrikers.