NASL Week 1: A Look Back

NASL Week 1: A Look Back

NASL

NASL Week 1: A Look Back

FTL Strikers 1

photo by Rosa Cavalcanti

By FRANCO PANIZO

Opening weekend of the 2012 NASL season saw no shortage of drama, especially in South Florida where the Ft. Lauderdale Strikers overcame being a man down to earn their first three points of the season.

Finishing as runners-up last season, the Strikers began their quest of returning to the NASL Championship Series with a 1-0 win over FC Edmonton in front of 4,779 fans at Lockhart Stadium on Saturday night. 

The Strikers topped Edmonton despite playing with 10 men for more than half of the match. Forward Aly Hassan, who made his professional debut in the game, was given a controversial red card in the 40th minute of the match, but Ft. Lauderdale regrouped at halftime and responded just after the hourmark.

Former Chicago Fire forward Andy Herron got on the end of a cross from Scott Lorenz and powered home a finish against Canadian U-23 goalkeeper Michal Mislewicz to give head coach Daryl Shore a win at the start of his third season in charge of the Strikers.

Here are highlights of the match as well as a look back at the rest of the Week 1 action in NASL:

 

MINNESOTA HELD TO SCORELESS DRAW BY CAROLINA

The Minnesota Stars FC's title defense got off to a disappointing start, as the reigning NASL champions were held to a scoreless draw by the Carolina RailHawks. Playing in front of a record crowd of 8,693 at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome in Minneapolis, Minn., the Stars failed to find the back of the net despite outshooting Carolina, 22-2.

RailHawks goalkeeper Ray Burse was one of the heroes in the game, making eight saves en route to recording the shutout. Burse was also not beaten on a penalty kick from Stars midfielder Neil Hlavaty, who shot over the crossbar on his attempt in the 72nd minute.

The RailHawks were without U.S. Under-23 men's national team centerback Gale Agbossoumonde, who continues to recover from a toe injury. 

Here are the match highlights:

 

SCORPIONS OPEN WITH DRAW AGAINST SILVERBACKS

The San Antonio Scorpions officially kicked off their time as an NASL club on Saturday, playing to a scoreless draw with the Atlanta Silverbacks in front of a capacity crowd of 5,000 at Atlanta SIlverbacks Park in Atlanta.

Both teams had chances in the game, but neither was able to find the back of the net as Scorpions goalkeeper Pat Hannigan and Silverbacks goalkeeper Daniel Illyes recorded cleansheets to begin the year.

Here are the match highlights:

 

ISLANDERS TOP ROWDIES DESPITE PLAYING WITH 10 MEN

The Puerto Rico Islanders may have played with a one-man disadvantage for over half an hour, but they were still able to open their season with a win. The Islanders defeated the rebranded Tampa Bay Rowdies, 1-0, at Bayamon Soccer Complex in Bayamon, Puerto Rico through a second-half goal from Ncholas Addlery.

The Islanders striker opened his account for the season in the 69th minute with a left-footed effort that beat Rowdies goalkeeper Jeff Attinella. The goal came 11 minutes after defender Jamie Cunningham had been sent off for a hard foul in the match played in front of 952 fans.

Here are the match highlights:

 

 

NASL Standings

1. Ft. Lauderdale Strikers 3 points, +1 GD

2. Puerto Rico Islanders 3 points, +1 GD

3. Atlanta Silverbacks 1 point, 0 GD

4. Carolina RailHawks 1 point, 0 GD

5. Minnesota Stars FC 1 point, 0 GD

6. San Antonio Scorpions 1 point, 0 GD

7. FC Edmonton 0 points, -1 GD

8. Tampa Bay Rowdies 0 points, -1 GD

 

NOTES

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What did you think of the Strikers' 1-0 win over Edmonton? Surprised the Stars were held scoreless despite taking 22 shots on goal? Happy to see the Scorpions draw in their first NASL game?

Share your thoughts below.

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