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Tampa Bay Rowdies hold on for 3-3 draw against Miami Blues

FORT LAUDERDALE — After falling behind early twice, the Rowdies fought back then took the lead in the second half.

But Miami rallied late to force a 3-3 draw against its Coastal Cup rival in the U.S. Soccer Federation Division 2 match Saturday night at Lockhart Stadium.

With the draw, the Rowdies (6-8-8) claimed the Cup in the four-game series. They defeated visiting Miami 2-0 on July 25, and the teams tied 1-1 on July 4 and May 1.

Tampa Bay has 26 points and holds fifth place in the USL Conference, one point ahead of last-place Puerto Rico.

Former Miami forward Aaron King gave the Rowdies a 3-2 lead in the 56th minute as he froze keeper Caleb Patterson.

Reserve Martin Nunez tied it in the 82nd minute for Miami (3-8-11), last in the NASL Conference with 20 points.

"I love scoring goals regardless," said King, who made six appearances last season for the Blues. "But it's nice scoring off your (former) team, for sure. I'm definitely comfortable playing at Lockhart. But it's tough to take this draw after we were up. Points were left, so it's frustrating."

Forwards Chukwudi Chijindu and Danilo Martins, two of four players Miami picked up last week, each scored in the first half.

Chijindu, who came over from Chivas USA on an MLS loan, scored from 6 yards out off a cross from midfielder Paulo Araujo in the 19th minute.

The Rowdies fought back and scored on an impressive shot from a few yards out by Maykel Galindo in the 33rd minute.

Martins, a Brazilian from the Sao Paulo A2 league, then took advantage of a bounce off the referee after Rob Valentino tried to clear the ball. Martins corralled the ball and scored in the 42nd minute.

Tampa Bay came back to tie it in the 45th minute when Galindo took the ball into the box.

The ball bounced off the back of Miami midfielder Gerson Mayen to make it 2-2.

Rowdies forward Aaron Wheeler (shin) returned after being out since May 29.

Information from the South Florida Sun-Sentinel was used in this report.

Up next

Rowdies vs. Vancouver

7:30 p.m. Thursday,

Steinbrenner Field, Tampa Radio/Internet: 1010-AM;

Rowdies 3

Miami 3

Tampa Bay Rowdies hold on for 3-3 draw against Miami Blues 08/14/10 [Last modified: Saturday, August 14, 2010 11:14pm]
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