Clippers Tip N.Y., Gain 1st NPSL Win
Barry Rowan—who may be the Smoky Burgess of soccer—got a chance to redeem himself last night, and as a result the Oakland Clippers have their first win.
Rowan came off the bench as Burgess has done so well with a baseball bat in pinch roles, to initiate the only goal in a sloshy, agonizing 1-0 win over the New York Generals at the Oakland Coliseum.
An Englishman built like a miniature Jim Taylor, Rowan missed two ideal goal shots Sunday that, more than anything, resulted in a 34 tie with Pittsburgh.
He entered early in the second half last night to initiate the winning goal — which in soccer carries the importance of the goal itself — as the Clippers struck in the 88th minute.
From outside the penalty area, Rowan crossed beautifully to Ademar Saccone, who trapped it with his chest, then passed to Selimir Milosevic for the scoring shot from seven yards. There was 1:32 left.
A crowd of 2,552 moved back underneath the overhang of the Coliseum as rain fell the better part of the second half. The stadium floor, although re-turfed, still suffers from puddles as both teams will testify.
Rowan was a happy young man, as could be expected.
"I didn't sleep too well after Sunday's match, but for some reason I slept like a baby last night. Will tonight, too," he said.
"The goal set-up was lucky. It's hard to play back on a wet field. The defense is at a disadvantage; too much skidding," he admitted.
About his never on Sunday? "Football (soccer) is a funny sport — good and bad, you know. But, if they all went in you'd be playing for your country."
The conditions were hardest on the Generals, a fast team that relies heavily on the long pass and breakaway by a forward.
"The wet field does spoiled our game. However, the Clippers are a good side," acknowledged General Coach Freddie Goodwin, former manager of Scunthorpe United.
The Clippers scored two minutes before Milosevic's goal, but Mario Baesso, the scorer, was offside.
Milosevic thought he had a goal in the first half. The referee agreed until an argument by the Generals brought an over-ruling by the linesman, who said the ball hit the outside guide wire that supports the goal cage.
A great deal of credit belongs to the Clippers' defense — Ilija Mitic, Momcilo Gavric, Melvyn Scott, goalkeeper Mirko Stojanovic and especially halfback Milan Cop — for the way they checked the fleet New York forwards, Warren Archibald and LeRoy DeLeon.
"That Cop, he was the best," exclaimed Dr. Aleksandar Obradovic, Clipper manager. "All night it was stop, stop, stop. He was excellent, which in Europe is the best you can say about a player.
"We changed our lineup partly to stop their speed. But with a wet field, it's very difficult to score for either team. We had to win tonight after the bad loss Sunday, and we did."
The Clippers, now 1-0-1 in the National Professional Soccer League (New York is 0-2), travel to St. Louis Sunday for a nationally-televised game with the stars, 2.p.m., over Channel 5.
W L T Pts. GF GA Chicago 2 0 0 15 3 1 California 1 0 1 13 4 3 Los Angeles 1 0 0 9 3 2 St . Louis 0 1 0 1 1 2 Toronto 0 2 0 0 0 3
W L T Pts. GF GA Philadelphia 1 0 0 8 2 0 Baltimore 1 0 0 7 1 0 Pittsburgh 0 0 1 6 3 3 New York 0 2 0 2 2 4 Atlanta 0 1 0 0 0 1