Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Tampa Bay Rowdies at midpoint of preseason

LAND O'LAKES — As the Tampa Bay Rowdies reach the midpoint of their preseason, their focus will begin to turn.

Tampa Bay has three exhibition games, two ties and last week's 1-0 win over MLS's Philadelphia Union, under its belt. Coach Paul Dalglish has emphasized getting his team in shape for a grueling 30-game season, so this week will end the rough part, four weeks dedicated mostly to fitness.

After Friday's preseason game against UCF, Dalglish expects to give his team two days off, then begin preparing for its first U.S. Soccer Federation Division II regular-season game, April 16 in Baltimore.

"You saw their fitness level after just three weeks in the Philadelphia game," Dalglish said. "After four tough weeks, I expect them to be at nearly 100 percent. Then it's more of a case of fine-tuning before the Baltimore game, the little things that make a big difference, trying to create more goal-scoring opportunities."

The team's training schedule has included five hours of work a day, including morning weight training sessions, afternoon on-field sessions and yoga once a week.

"The early signs are very good, but preseason means nothing if we don't go and put on a performance in the first game of the season against Baltimore," Dalglish said. "It's encouraging, but you have to have the humility to think you haven't done it already. We've got good players; we've got good attitude."

LOCAL STANDOUT BURT STANDS TALL: Northeast High alum Chad Burt impressed the team at a local combine enough to earn a training camp invitation on a trial basis, and last week the team signed him to a contract.

Dalglish said Burt's goal in a 2-2 tie with MLS's Dallas on March 12 — he fired a free kick from 30 yards out through a small gap in the defensive wall — is a "goal-of-the-year contender."

"It's going to take some goal to beat that one," Dalglish said. "For anybody to make the team, it's going to be very tough, but Chad did it, and that shows how highly we think of him."

Burt, a 22-year-old midfielder, played for the Carolina Railhawks of the USL First Division last year.

NEXT PRESEASON GAME: The Rowdies play their fourth preseason game, and first away from Tampa, at 7 p.m. Friday against UCF at the Lake Myrtle Sports Complex, Lake Myrtle Park Road, Auburndale. Admission is free.

free KICKS: Though their time training at Land O'Lakes Recreation Complex has been viewed a success, the Rowdies are working on moving their practice site to Hillsborough County once the regular season opens. One potential site is Shimberg Park in Tampa. …The Rowdies might add a sixth preseason game April 3. Details should come by the end of the week.

Eduardo A. Encina can be reached

Preseason schedule

Friday UCF, at Lake Myrtle Sports Complex, Auburndale, 7

April 9 at USF, 7

Regular season

April 16 at Crystal Palace Baltimore, 7

April 24 at NSC Minnesota Stars, 7

May 1 at Miami FC Blues, 7:30

May 8 vs. Austin Aztex, 7:30**

May 14 at Carolina Railhawks, 7

May 19 at Austin Aztex, 7:30

May 27 vs. NSC Minnesota, 7:30**

May 29 vs. Puerto Rico Islanders, 7:30**

June 6 at Vancouver Whitecaps, 4

June 12 vs. Montreal Impact, 7**

June 19 at Puerto Rico Islanders, 8:05

June 27 at Portland Timbers, 5

July 4 vs. Miami FC Blues, 4**

July 10 at NSC Minnesota Stars, 7

July 15 vs. Puerto Rico Islanders, 7:30**

July 22 vs. Rochester Rhinos, 7:30**

July 25 vs. Miami FC Blues, 4**

July 31 vs. Portland Timbers, 7:30**

Aug. 7 at Austin Aztex, 7:30

Aug. 11 at Puerto Rico Islanders, 8:05

Aug. 14 at Miami FC Blues, 7:30

Aug. 21 vs. Vancouver Whitecaps, 7:30**

Aug. 25 vs. Carolina Railhawks, 7:30**

Aug. 29 vs. AC St. Louis, 4**

Sept. 11 at Rochester Rhinos, 7

Sept. 16 vs. Austin Aztex, 7:30**

Sept. 19 at Montreal Impact, 2

Sept. 24 vs. NSC Minnesota, 7:30**

Oct. 1 vs. Crystal Palace Baltimore, 7:30**

** Home games at Steinbrenner Field, Tampa

Ticket information:

Tampa Bay Rowdies at midpoint of preseason 03/24/10 [Last modified: Wednesday, March 24, 2010 8:01pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Rays Tales: The stories behind Corey Dickerson's ascension

    The Heater

    The 25 pounds DH/LF Corey Dickerson lost during the winter through diet and exercise are considered the primary reason for his ascension to one of the American League's most productive hitters, going into the weekend leading in hits, multi-hit games and total bases, and ranked in the top five in average, runs and …

    Tampa Bay Rays designated hitter Corey Dickerson (10) connects for a sac fly, scores Tampa Bay Rays first baseman Steve Pearce (28) in the fourth inning of the game between the Seattle Mariners and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Wednesday, June 15, 2016.
  2. For starters: Rays at Twins, looking for another with Odorizzi starting


    UPDATE, 12:45: Cash said Robertson was taking better swings Friday and so he wanted to move him up today, liking the idea of having three straight right-handers vs. a LHP they don't know much about. ... Souza was still smiling this morning about his failed dive attempt last night, and the reaction it got. .. The …

  3. Why the Lightning would consider trading Jonathan Drouin

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — This summer, the Lightning could trade one of its most dynamic young players ever.

    Tampa Bay Lightning left wing Jonathan Drouin (27) celebrates with his team on the bench after beating Chicago Blackhawks goalie Scott Darling (33) to score his second goal of the period and to tie the score at 4 to 4 during second period action at the Amalie Arena in Tampa Monday evening (03/27/17).
  4. Why the Lightning should keep Jonathan Drouin

    Lightning Strikes

    Keep him.

    Jonathan Drouin is live bait. The Lightning is ready to run the hook through him and cast him out there again. Drouin has enough talent for the Lightning to meet some defensive needs in a deal.

    Keep him.

    Lightning wing Jonathan Drouin celebrates after beating Los Angeles Kings goalie Peter Budaj during the first period of Tuesday's win in Tampa. [DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD   |   Times]
  5. This Tampa Bay Lightning wing rides the newest wave of fan interaction

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — There are photos of Lightning fan Shaun Egger as a toddler at center ice at the then-Thunderome, aka Tropicana Field. He's played in the Lightning's high school hockey league for Palm Harbor University. But his closest personal encounter with players had been waving through a crowd after a training camp …

    Tampa Bay Lightning player J.T. Brown wears his anti UV glasses as he talks over the headset with a hockey fan while they play against each other on line in an XBOX NHL video game in Brown's game room at his home in south Tampa. The fan chose to be the Washington Capitals and Brown, of course, was the Tampa Bay Lightning. Brown interacts with fans through video game systems as he streams the games live on Twitch with plans for the proceeds to go to charity.