1976 Tampa Bay Rowdies indoor season

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Tampa Bay Rowdies
1976 indoor season
OwnerUnited States George W. Strawbridge, Jr.
General ManagerUnited States Beau Rodgers
ManagerItaly Eddie Firmani
StadiumBayfront Center
NASLRegional: Champion
League: Champion
Top goalscorerLeague:
Bermuda Clyde Best
(7 goals)

All:
Bermuda Clyde Best
(11 goals)
Highest home attendance5,787
(March 27 vs. Lancers)
Lowest home attendance4,762
(March 12 vs. Diplomats)
Average home league attendance5,464
← 1975
1977 →

The 1976 Tampa Bay Rowdies indoor season was the second indoor season of the club's existence. The Rowdies were able to replicate their 1975 outdoor success by winning the North American Soccer League's 1976 indoor championship.

Club[edit]

Roster[edit]

No. Position Player Nation
1 Goalkeeper Arnie Mausser  United States
1 Goalkeeper Bob Stetler  United States
2 Defender Farrukh Quraishi  England
3 Defender Alex Pringle  Scotland
5 Defender Malcolm Linton  England
7 Forward Stewart Scullion  South Africa
8 Midfielder Randy Garber  Canada
9 Forward Clyde Best  Bermuda
10 Forward Rodney Marsh  England
11 Forward Doug Wark  Scotland
12 Forward Derek Smethurst (capt.)  South Africa
14 Forward Joey Fink  United States
15 Midfielder Mark Lindsay  England
16 Defender John Bluem  United States
17 Midfielder Eddie Austin  United States
18 Defender Arsène Auguste  Haiti

Management and technical staff[edit]

  • Owner: George Strawbridge, Jr.
  • General Manager: Beau Rogers
  • Head Coach: Eddie Firmani
  • Business Manager: Chas Serednesky
  • Director of Public Relations: Francisco Marcos
  • Trainors: Mike Dolan and Stan Taylor
  • Team Physician: John Kauzlarich

Review[edit]

The Tampa Bay Rowdies were the runners-up of the 1975 NASL Indoor tournament in March, and the winners of Soccer Bowl '75 in August, both held California at the home venues of the San Jose Earthquakes. In October 1975 the NASL announced that the Bayfront Center would host both the 1976 Indoor Eastern Regionals and Final Four.[1][2] It was later announced that Tampa Bay would also play a pre-tournament international friendly at the Bayfront Center. This meant that all of the Rowdies indoor matches for 1976 would be played at home.[3]

Friendlies[edit]

Billed in media reports as an International Challenge Cup Match,[4] Tampa Bay’s first game was a pre-tournament international friendly versus Santos F.C. of Jamaica, and played on March 6 at the Bayfront Center. The Rowdies easily defeated their guests, who were playing indoor soccer for the very first time, by the score of 11–4.[5]

Eastern Regionals[edit]

The winner of the Eastern Regional would gain an automatic place in the Final Four. In their first tournament game the Rowdies battled back from a 4–1 deficit midway through the second period, to score eight straight goals and defeat Washington, 9–5.[6] The following evening Tampa Bay had a much easier time in defeating the Boston Minutemen, 5–3, as they dictated play until the final minutes, when Boston scored two meaningless late goals. Those two victories left the Rowdies as the only undefeated team in the group, and therefore champions of their region for the second straight year.[7] Stewart Scullion was named Regional MVP, with Rodney Marsh and Arsene Auguste joining him on the All-Regional squad.

Regional standings[edit]

Pos Team G W L GF GA GD PTS
1 Tampa Bay Rowdies 2 2 0 14 8 +6 4
2 Washington Diplomats 2 1 1 14 12 +2 2
3 Miami Toros 2 1 1 9 15 -6 2
4 Boston Minutemen 2 0 2 9 11 -2 0

Final Four[edit]

In the semifinal Tampa Bay held a slim, one-goal lead in the third period over the Dallas Tornado. With less than three minutes remaining the Rowdies broke open the match the by scoring three straight goals in a span of 81 seconds to defeated Dallas, 6–2, and earn their second straight trip to the indoor finals.[8]

On March 27, 1976, the Tampa Bay Rowdies played in their third championship final out of three total competitions in their brief history. This time they would face surprise finalists Rochester Lancers. Unfortunately for Rochester, goalkeeper Jim May was severely injured late in their semi-final upset win over San Jose, and could not play in the final. The Rowdies were without Rodney Marsh for the contest, as he suffered a head injury in the semi-final. In a closely fought match Tampa Bay prevailed, 6–4, on three goals by Derek Smethurst, two by Clyde Best, and one by Mark Lindsay. Smethurst’s game winning, third goal came with 3:18 left in the match. Best was named tournament MVP, with Smethurst and Stewart Scullion joining him on the All-Tournament squad.[9]

Bracket[edit]

Semifinals Championship Final
      
M1 Rochester Lancers 6
W1 San Jose Earthquakes 4
M1 Rochester Lancers 4
E1 Tampa Bay Rowdies 6
E1 Tampa Bay Rowdies 6
W2 Dallas Tornado 2

Championship standings[edit]

Pos Team G W L GF GA GD
1 Tampa Bay Rowdies 4 4 0 26 14 +12
2 Rochester Lancers 4 3 1 20 16 +4
3 San Jose Earthquakes 4 3 1 35 18 +17
4 Dallas Tornado 4 2 2 20 15 +5

Match reports[edit]

Statistics[edit]

Scoring[edit]

GP = Games Played, G = Goals (worth 2 points), A = Assists (worth 1 point), Pts = Points

Player GP G A Pts
Clyde Best 5 11 5 27
Stewart Scullion 5 6 6 18
Rodney Marsh 4 4 7 15
Derek Smethurst 4 4 0 8
Randy Garber 5 2 3 7
Mark Lindsay 5 3 0 6
Doug Wark 3 2 1 5
Arsène Auguste 4 1 2 4
Alex Pringle 4 1 1 3
Joey Fink 1 1 0 2
Eddie Austin 1 1 0 2
John Bluem 1 0 1 1

Goalkeeping[edit]

Note: GP = Games played; Min = Minutes played; GA = Goals against; GAA = Goals against average; W = Wins; L = Losses

Player GP Min GA GAA W L
Arnie Mausser 4 160 13 3.66 4 0
Bob Stetler 2 65 5 3.46 1 0

Honors[edit]

Individual honors[edit]

Transfers[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Indoor Finale Here?". Evening Independent. October 8, 1975. p. 3C. Retrieved September 15, 2016.
  2. ^ "Tampa Bay Gets Indoor Finale". Evening Independent. October 9, 1975. p. 2C. Retrieved September 15, 2016.
  3. ^ "Santos Rowdies' Indoor Opener". Evening Independent. February 12, 1976. p. 5C. Retrieved September 15, 2016.
  4. ^ Gurney, Jack (March 6, 1976). "Rowdies Host Jamaicans Tonight At Bayfront". Sarasota Herald-Tribune. p. 1-D. Retrieved September 15, 2016.
  5. ^ "Best Scores Four To Spark Rowdies". Sarasota Herald-Tribune. March 7, 1976. p. 2-D. Retrieved September 15, 2016.
  6. ^ Blankenship, Ken (March 13, 1976). "Down 4–1, Rowdies dump Diplomats 9–5". St. Petersburg Times. p. 1C. Retrieved September 15, 2016.
  7. ^ Gurney, Jack (March 14, 1976). "Rowdies Capture Indoor Regional". Sarasota Herald-Tribune. p. 2-C. Retrieved September 15, 2016.
  8. ^ Gulick, Phil (March 27, 1976). "Rowdie Blitz Opens Way For Indoor Title". Evening Independent. p. 1-C. Retrieved September 15, 2016.
  9. ^ Gurney, Jack (March 28, 1976). "Rowdies Win NASL Indoor Crown 6–4". Sarasota Herald-Tribune. p. 1D. Retrieved September 15, 2016.
  10. ^ Zier, Patrick (March 28, 1976). "Rowdies Whip Rochester To Win The Indoor Title". Lakeland Ledger. p. 2C. Retrieved September 15, 2016.