TAMPA BAY SPORTS WEEK IN REVIEW – SEPTEMBER 13
By Leo Haggerty

A full slate of contests across almost every local athletic endeavor.  Below is the sports week in review for Tampa Bay from September 6th to September 13th.  Enjoy.

LIGHTNING HOCKEY

MONDAY – W 8-2
If it was a fight, the referee would have stopped it.  The Bolts demolished a tired Islanders squad, who had just came off a grueling seven-game series two days earlier with the Philadelphia Flyers to advance to the Eastern Conference finals, with an offensive barrage to go up 1-0.  After New York tied the score at one-each early in the opening period, Tampa Bay exploded for five consecutive goals before the Isles found the back of the net in the third period.
ONE BIG THING – F Nikita Kucherov.  #86 had four assists and a goal of his own in his best offensive performance of the playoffs to date.

WEDNESDAY – W 2-1
Tampa Bay goes up 2-0 in the series with a late Kucherov tally with nine ticks left in regulation. D Ryan McDonagh fed #86 with a perfect cross-ice pass that beat Islanders G Semyon Varlamov from just to the right of the crease high to the glove side for the winner.
ONE BIG THING – G Andrei Vasilevskiy.  #88 stopped 27 of 28 Islanders shots allowing the Lightning, who had only 21 shots on goal in a lackluster overall performance, to steal Game 2 from NY.

FRIDAY – L 5-3
New York cuts the Tampa Bay lead to 2-1 with a couple of late third period tallies.  After the Bolts tied the score at 3-3 in the final period on goals by F Ondrej Palat and F Tyler Johnson, Islanders F Brock Nelson and F Jean-Gabriel Pageau lit the lamp to give New York the victory.
ONE BIG THING – Varlamov.  #40 saved 34 of 37 shots and was under constant pressure from the Tampa Bay snipers.

SUNDAY – W 4-1
The Lightning took a commanding 3-1 advantage.  After Nelson puts the Isles up 1-0 midway through the middle period, F Blake Coleman knots the score 15 seconds later.  A dozen ticks after that goal, Palat puts the Bolts ahead for good.
ONE BIG THING – The Big Cat.  Vasilevskiy not only turned away 26 of 27 NY shots but assisted on the game-tying goal by Coleman.

NEXT GAME – VS NEW YORK ISLANDERS ON TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 15

RAYS BASEBALL

SUNDAY – W 5-4 10
After giving up a run to the Marlins in the top of the 10th, the Rays stormed back for two in the bottom half of the inning to secure the victory. IB Brandon Lowe has the game winner with a sacrifice fly.
ONE BIG THING – Rays bullpen.  Three scoreless innings until the one run in the 10th to keep Tampa Bay in the game.

MONDAY – L 6-1
The Nationals hold the Rays scoreless for seven innings to cruise to a win in DC.  OF Randy Arozarena the only bright spot for the Rays with a homer.
ONE BIG THING – SP Matt Scherzer.  Seven innings of shutout ball with eight K’s.

TUESDAY – L 5-3
Washington sweeps the two-game series scoring four times in the first three innings.  Rays get close with three in the 6th but not enough.
ONE BIG THING – Nats pen.  Four shutout innings to secure the victory

THURSDAY – L 4-3
Rays lose third in a row in the opener of a four-game series to the Red Sox at the Trop.  Boston uses the long ball to score three of their four runs.
ONE BIG THING 
– BoSox 3B Rafael Devers.  3-for-4 with a homer and 3 RBIs that included the game-winning single in the 7th.

FRIDAY – W 11-1
Tampa Bay stops the bleeding with a blowout win.  Rays hitters pound out a dozen hits and TB pitchers scatter 11 Beantown base knocks.
ONE BIG THING – Rays lineup.  First time in modern MLB history that a team started nine lefty swingers and it came through big time.

SATURDAY – W 5-4
Rays become the first AL team to hit 30 wins.  Tampa Bay takes the lead for good in the bottom of the 7th and the pen throws two scoreless innings.
ONE BIG THING – IB Brandon Lowe.  Late inning dinger to seal the deal.

SUNDAY – L 6-3
Red Sox split the series with a win.  After the Rays take a 3-2 lead in the 4th, Boston puts up a deuce in the next two frames.
ONE BIG THING – C Christian Vasquez.  First homer since July 30 capped a 2-for-4 afternoon with a couple of RBI’s as well as two runs scored.

NEXT GAME – VS WASHINGTON NATIONALS ON TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 15

BUCCANEERS FOOTBALL

SUNDAY – L 34-23

The Bucs fell to the Saints in New Orleans in the opener for both teams.  After the Pewter Pirates took an early 7-0 lead, Drew Brees and Company scored the next 24 points with the last score being a Pick 6 by Janoris Jenkins that put the game out of reach for the Bucs.
ONE BIG THING – Turnovers.  New Orleans caused three, two interceptions and a fumble recovery, while having none of their own.

NEXT GAME – VS CAROLINA PANTHERS ON SUNDAY SEPTEMBER 20 

ROWDIES SOCCER

FRIDAY – L 1-0
The Rowdies fell for the second time this season to the Battery 1-0.  It’s been the second time the Tampa Bay has lost to Charleston and both have been on the road.
ONE BIG THING – Zeiko Lewis.  The Battery midfield attacker scored the only goal when he grounded one past Rowdies keeper Evan Louro.

NEXT GAME – VS ATLANTA UNITED 2 ON WEDNESDAY SEPTEMBER 16

TORNADOES FOOTBALL

No games this week.

NEXT GAME – NOT SCHEDULED AT THE PRESENT TIME

USF SPORTS

SATURDAY – W 27-6
Leading by a score of 7-6, the Bulls post the next 20 points to dispatch the Bulldogs.  No fans and a deluge didn’t slow down USF.
ONE BIG THING -USF defense.  Held the Citadel to 6 points and caused three turnovers.

NEXT GAME – AT NOTRE DAME ON SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 19

UT SPORTS

No games this week.

NEXT GAME – NOT SCHEDULED AT THE PRESENT TIME