Round one of new Orlando rivalry goes to the Tropics, 9-6

by Brian Ackley

LAKELAND, Fla. –  Victor Parreiras had three goals, and Hugo Silva was big in goal as the Florida Tropics downed the Orlando SeaWolves in a Major Arena Soccer League game at the RP Funding Center Saturday night.

It was the first of six regular season matchups between the two geographic rivals in the South Central Division, with Florida improving to 3-3 and Orlando slipping to 1-3.

The Tropics got two shorthanded goals on the same Orlando man advantage early in the third quarter – one from Parreiras and another from Anthony Arico – after the SeaWolves had gotten to with 5-1 less than thirty seconds in to the half on a goal by Gordy Gurson, who also scored in the fourth.

It's the second time in team history the Tropics have recorded two shorthanded goals in the same game. They turned the trick in their first season in a road win at Kansas City, with Arico and Raphael Nascimento scoring shorties exactly 90 seconds apart.

The Tropics let at intermission 5-0, and built that to 8-1 before the SeaWolves started to find the back of the net.

Freddy Moojen had two goals and an assist, Arico had two goals, and Florida got singles from Guilherme – his team leading eighth of the year – as well as Ricardo Diegues, playing in his first game of the year. Max Touloute had three assists. Orlando got additional goals from Osvaldo Rojas (2), Joshio Sandoval and Tyler Turner.

Florida's Hugo Silva faced 33 SeaWolves shots and was credited with 15 saves.

Florida will be on the road next weekend when they visit St. Louis for a Saturday night start, and are in Kansas City for a Sunday matinee. Both games will be broadcast live at The Tropics return home Saturday, Jan. 12, for a SeaWolves rematch. That will be Orlando's next game as they are off next weekend.