NASL Playoff Rewind: Rowdies edge RailHawks, Stars tie Scorpions in first legs

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Any fear of suffering from the bye week blues were put to rest by the Tampa Bay Rowdies this past weekend, as they continued their red-hot form in the NASL semifinals this past weekend.

The Rowdies moved one step closer to reaching the NASL Championship Series and extended their current unbeaten streak to seven games by going into WakeMed Soccer Park and defeating the Carolina RailHawks, 2-1, in the first leg of their semifinals clash on Saturday. Carolina negated Mike Ambersley's opener through a Brian Shriver penalty kick, but Tampa Bay reclaimed a permanent lead when Daniel Antoniuk scored with five minutes left in regulation in a match played in front of a crowd of 3,138.

The regular season champion San Antonio Scorpions did not come out of their first-round bye with a win, but they did earn a favorable result in their first leg against Minnesota Stars FC. The Scorpions played to a scoreless draw with the Stars in a game played in front of 2,006 fans at NSC Stadium on Saturday, setting up a second leg in San Antonio in which the Scorpions will have the upperhand.

The second legs of both semifinals series will be played this coming weekend. The Rowdies host the RailHawks at Al Lang Stadium on Saturday while the Stars visit the Scorpions at Heroes Stadium on Sunday.

What do you think of these results? Impressed with the Rowdies' win over the RailHawks? Surprised by the Scorpions' scoreless draw with the Stars? Who do you see reaching the NASL Championship Series?

Share your thoughts below.

  • NC Jeff

    The ‘Hawks had a 17-9 shooting advantage, so a similar effort in Tampa could at least force an OT if not a win, outright. That said, having to now go on the road, it’ll be an extremely tough hill to climb.

    For Minnesota, I’m inclined to just take the chalk and go with San Antonio. But, Minn. is like a vampire … they’re never really dead until you have put a wooden stake in their heart.


  • brant

    Part of what hurt Railhawks attendance was a big youth soccer tournament this past weekend. There were a bunch of parents (incl me) that didn’t take this kids to the game b/c they’d be out too late with 8/9am kickoffs on Sunday.
    It also hurt that NC State, Duke, and UNC all had home football games that same weekend.


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