The third round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup kicked off Tuesday night with three cupsets, including an historic first as Union Omaha became the first USL League One team to defeat MLS competition in tournament history.
Eleven teams advanced on the first match day of the third round, which continues on Wednesday with 13 games on ESPN+.
The cupsets began early in the evening when Detroit City FC, playing its inaugural season in the USL Championship, recorded a 2-1 comeback victory against the visiting Columbus Crew in a match that had the air of rivalry common among teams from the two regions.
South Georgia Tormenta FC began what was an impressive night for USL League One (Division III) clubs by taking down USL Championship (Division II) opponents Birmingham Legion FC 2-0 on the road in Alabama.
Union Omaha then delivered the night’s biggest shock. The Owls went on the road to Soldier Field where they fought back twice against the Chicago Fire to dramatically take the game to PKs. It was there that the reigning USL1 champions prevailed 5-4 to became the first team from the Division III league, which was founded in 2019, to defeat a Division I (MLS) club in U.S. Open Cup history.
Four of the remaining eight contests were close affairs as Division I (MLS) teams moved on by one-goal margins against USL Championship (Division. II) opponents. In somewhat more lopsided contests, San Jose Earthquakes and D.C. United eased past NISA (Division III) squads by 5-0 and 3-0 respectively, while FC Cincinnati joined them in the multi-goal win column, although they needed extra time to record a hard fought 2-0 victory against Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC (USLC).
Finally in the night cap, California United Strikers FC (NISA) earned a last-gasp, 2-1 comeback win against FC Tucson (USL1) as Ryotaro Kawashima scored the game winner in the second minute of stoppage time for the Div. III side.
In total, seven MLS sides, one USL Championship team, two USL League One clubs and one NISA outfit all advanced to the Round of 32 on the night.
Following the conclusion of the third round, U.S. Soccer will conduct the Round of 32 draw on Thursday, April 21 at noon E. Teams will be pooled geographically into groups of four, with the Division I clubs first entering the competition being placed in different groups. A random draw will determine the pairings within each group. Instances where a logical geographic fit doesn’t exist in determining the groups will be resolved by random selection. The Round of 32 draw to determine the pairings between the 24 Third Round winners and eight higher seeded Division I (MLS) clubs will be broadcast on Twitter (@opencup) and YouTube.
THIRD ROUND RECAPS
Flower City Union (NISA) 0, D.C. United (MLS) 3
Ola Kamara scored two goals and assisted on a third during a 13-minute span late in the second half in the cold (38 degrees at kickoff), rain, sometimes snow and the wind at the Rochester Community Sports Complex in Rochester, N.Y. Despite dominating huge stretches of the match, D.C. could not solve goalkeeper Maykell Ortega until the 73rd minute. Only seconds after drilling an attempt off the left post, Kamara headed in a rebound of a spilled save from close range. His left-wing feed set up Nigel Robertha’s tally on the right side of the penalty area in the 81st minute. After Ortega tripped Kamara in the box, the United forward converted his spot kick into the lower left corner to close out the scoring in the 86th minute. D.C. outshot Flower City, 17-3.
Miami FC (USL Championship) 0, Inter Miami CF (MLS) 1
In the first Miami Clasico, Leonardo Campana snapped a scoreless tie in the 83rd minute to lift Inter Miami to its first Open Cup win ever at FIU Stadium in Miami, Fla. Campana netted with only minutes remaining from 11 yards past goalkeeper Connor Sparrow for his fifth goal across all competitions, before a Miami FC record crowd of 11,158. Benjamin Ofeimu was the defensive standout for Miami FC, blocking and clearing three consecutive shots off the line in the 50th minute. Jamaican international defender Damion Lowe was given his marching orders for his second yellow card of the match four minutes into second-half stoppage time. He will miss Inter Miami’s Round of 32 encounter. Goalkeeper Drake Callender was solid in the net for the MLS side, making three important saves as the Div. II side gave as good as it got throughout a match that buzzed with derby energy.
FC Cincinnati (MLS) 0, Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC (USL Championship) 0, 2-0 AET
It took until overtime but the Queen City’s pro club from north of the Ohio River proved its mettle in its rivalry with Pittsburgh. Alvaro Barreal scored in the 95th and 99th minute as FC Cincinnati survived its Open Cup opener at TQL Stadium in Cincinnati, Ohio. Barreal converted a penalty kick to open the scoring five minutes into overtime and ripped a left-footed hammer to finish off the Riverhounds on a counter attack a few minutes later. Roman Celetano kept a clean sheet in his first appearance with FC Cincinnati’s first team. Kenardo Forbes scuttled a late chance for Pittsburgh.
Detroit City FC (USL Championship) 2, Columbus Crew (MLS) 1
It was time to rock for Detroit City FC when the curtain came down after Le Rouge’s dramatic 2-1 comeback win against MLS visitors Columbus Crew. The show began early when DCFC gave away a penalty kick in the fifth minute that Crew forward Gyasi Zardes cooly buried in the bottom left corner. From there the visitors carried play in the frigid temps at Keyworth Stadium until the half hour mark when Detroit, buoyed by its rowdy home atmosphere, began to carve out some chances. Half time came and went with the Crew up 1-0 and Zardes had a second penalty kick shout waved away by the referee in the opening minute of the second stanza. Having escaped a potential second goal against them, DCFC equalized in the 64th minute via a Maxi Rodriguez header from Antoine Hoppenot’s sumptuous back post cross. As the finish line came into sight the match grew spicier with hard challenges and chances at both ends bringing the crowd to its feet. Le Rouge GK Nathan Steinwascher came up huge for the hosts making key interventions and one huge save, thus setting the table for Rodriguez to slip home the game winner from the penalty spot in the 85th minute.
Chicago Fire (MLS) 2, Union Omaha (USL League One) 2 (4-5 PKs)
Only seconds from elimination, the reigning USL League One champions equalized two minutes into stoppage time of the second extra time period and pulled out a 5-4 penalty kick cupset of the Chicago Fire at Soldier Field in Chicago, Ill. Second-half substitute and defender Alexander Touche scored from 12 yards to tie the game at 2-2 in the 122nd minute. Omaha goalkeeper Rashid Nuhu denied Miguel Navarro on the Fire’s sixth and final attempt before Dion Acoff drilled his winning PK past keeper Richey Spencer into the lower right corner. Kacper Przybylko, a late game substitute, sent his shootout attempt, Chicago’s first shot, off the crossbar. The Fire had taken a 2-1 lead on Rafael Czichos’ second penalty kick of the night in the 115th minute. Czichos, a late addition to the Starting XI, had converted his first PK to give the hosts a 1-0 advantage in the 53rd minute. Substitute Noe Meza, however, drilled home a 12-yard shot in the 68th minute for his first professional goal to knot it up at 1-1. Union Omaha become the first USL1 side to defeat an MLS team in Open Cup history.
Birmingham Legion FC (USL Championship) 0, South Georgia Tormenta FC (USL League One) 2
South Georgia will continue to torment opponents in the U.S. Open Cup Round of 32. A pair of goals and a clean sheet on defense gave South Georgia Tormenta FC the victory at Preston Goldfarb Field on the campus of Birmingham-Southern College in Birmingham, Ala. Curtis Thorn and Jake Dangler scored for Tormenta FC, which has defeated USL Championship sides each of the last two rounds. Thorn made the back post run and banged home a long cross into the box from Adjel Kingsford in the 34th minute, while Dangler ran unmarked onto a corner kick for a goal in the second half. Enzo Martinez missed a chance to get Birmingham Legion FC on the scoreboard when his flipped header skipped inches past the far post in the 75th minute.
FC Dallas (MLS) 2, FC Tulsa (USL Championship) 1
Jader Obrian broke a 1-1 deadlock in the 68th minute to boost FC Dallas past FC Tulsa at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas. Szaboics Schon bent a left-wing cross to Obrian on the right side and the forward slotted the ball past goalkeeper Sean Lewis for the game-winner and his second goal of the season across all competitions. The teams traded first-half goals. Dallas’ Franco Jara converted a penalty kick into the middle of the net in the 32nd minute, his second goal this season in all competitions, after John Fenwick fouled a Dallas player in the box. Ten minutes later, Bradley Bourgeois equalized for the visitors, burying the ball from three yards past keeper Jimmy Mauer. Dallas outshot Tulsa, 14-8.
Houston Dynamo FC (MLS) 2, Rio Grande Valley FC Toros (USL Championship) 1
Samuel Junqua’s added time goal was the biggest thing in Texas on Tuesday night. Junqua’s redirected header flew inside the far post for the match winner in the 94th minute to give Houston Dynamo the victory at PNC Stadium in Houston, TX. An early cross from winger Thor Ulfarsson found the head of a Toros FC defender for an own goal and a 1-0 lead for Houston jut minutes into the first half. Colin Miller made a number of brilliant saves for Rio Grande Valley, which equalized in the second half off an in-swinging corner kick that was deflected in by a Dynamo defender. Goalkeeper Michael Nelson made a diving stop on a second half penalty kick by Toros FC to keep the match tied, before Junqua was in the right place to net the winner from Darwin Delgado’s cross in the 94th minute.
FC Tucson (USL League One) 1, California United Strikers FC (NISA) 2
Ryotaro Kawashima got a big bear hug from ‘The Bear’ Barrera after the final whistle. Kawashima scored in the second minute of stoppage time as California United Strikers came from behind to win at Kino North Stadium in Tucson, Ariz. Kawashima got on the end of a cross from Bay Kurtz, took one touch to set up his right foot before rolling the game-winning goal into the net in the 92nd minute for Cal United, which advances to the Round of 32. Giovany Calixtro put the home side on the scoreboard first in the 17th minute with a dazzling strike as FC Tucson took a 1-0 lead into halftime. 17-year-old Brady Treinen’s long ball up the left channel resulted in the equalizer for California United as Omar Nuno, NISA’s reigning Golden Boot winner, slotted a goal past Carlos Merancio in the 70th minute. 15-year-old Marcus Lee, who became the youngest known goal scorer in the tournament’s 109-year history in the Second Round, started the match and was sharp but subbed for Christian Thierjung in the second half. Barrera finished with three saves for California United Strikers FC, which is making its debut in the tournament.
San Jose Earthquakes (MLS) 5, Bay Cities FC (NISA) 0
In their first game under interim head coach Alex Covelo, the Earthquakes struck twice in the opening half and cruised to victory, winning their first game of the year across all competitions at PayPal Park in San Jose, Calif. Covelo replaced Matias Almeyda, who was fired by the club on Monday after San Jose stumbled to a 0-4-3 start in league play. Jack Skahan gave the hosts all the scoring they needed in the 25th minute as he deftly placed a 19-yard free kick from the right side over the defensive wall and under the crossbar past goalkeeper Ian McGrane. Right back Paul Marie doubled the margin in the 37th minute as San Jose stretched the visitors’ defense after failing the clear the ball. After John Partida took down Ousseni Bouda in the box, Cade Cowell converted a penalty for a 3-0 bulge in the 59th minute. Sixteen-year-old Niko Tsarkis increased the lead to four goals with a 19-yard strike in the 83rd minute before Bouda put a bow on the victory five minutes later. James Marcinkowski recorded the shutout.
LA Galaxy (MLS) 1, San Diego Loyal (USL Championship) 0
LA Galaxy may have put up a statue to Landon Donovan but that doesn’t mean anything in the Open Cup. Kevin Cabral scored his first goal of 2022, and the Galaxy held on to beat Donovan and San Diego Loyal for the first time at Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, CA. Donovan scored 113 goals and led the Galaxy to four MLS Cups but his current team was unable to score against LA goalkeeper Jonathan Klinsmann (four saves), the son of former USMNT head coach Jurgen Klinsmann. After a brief build up, Cabral hit the post before tapping the rebound into the back of the net in the 29th minute for the 1-0 lead. Loyal, which beat local rival San Diego Albion in the Second Round, had a miserable time against a more physical MLS defense and were deflated early when calls for a penalty went unanswered after Robinson Moshobane went down in the box minutes after the Galaxy scored.
THIRD ROUND SCHEDULE & RESULTS
TUESDAY, APRIL 19
|Result||Game (home team listed first)||Venue|
|0-3||Flower City Union (NISA) vs D.C. United (MLS)||Rochester Community Sports Complex; Rochester, N.Y.|
|0-1||Miami FC (USLC) vs Inter Miami CF (MLS)||FIU Stadium; Miami, Fla.|
|0-0, 2-0 AET||FC Cincinnati (MLS) vs Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC (USLC)||TQL Stadium; Cincinnati, Ohio|
|2-1||Detroit City FC (USLC) vs Columbus Crew (MLS)||Keyworth Stadium; Hamtramck, Mich.|
|Chicago Fire FC (MLS) vs Union Omaha (USLL1)||Soldier Field; Chicago, Ill.|
|0-2||Birmingham Legion FC (USLC) vs South Georgia Tormenta FC (USLL1)||Preston Goldfarb Field (Birmingham-Southern College); Birmingham, Ala.|
|2-1||FC Dallas (MLS) vs FC Tulsa (USLC)||Toyota Stadium; Frisco, Texas|
|2-1||Houston Dynamo FC (MLS) vs Rio Grande Valley FC Toros (USLC)||PNC Stadium; Houston, Texas|
|1-2||FC Tucson (USLL1) vs California United Strikers FC (NISA)||Kino North Stadium; Tucson, Ariz.|
|5-0||San Jose Earthquakes (MLS) vs Bay Cities FC (NISA)||PayPal Park; San Jose, Calif.|
|1-0||LA Galaxy (MLS) vs San Diego Loyal SC (USLC)||Dignity Health Sports Park; Carson, Calif.|
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 20
|Time||Game (home team listed first)||Venue|
|6 p.m. ET||Rochester New York FC (MLSNP) vs FC Motown (NPSL)||Monroe Community College; Rochester, N.Y.|
|6:30 p.m. ET||Richmond Kickers (USLL1) vs North Carolina Fusion U23 (USLL2)||City Stadium; Richmond, Va.|
|7 p.m. ET||Hartford Athletic (USLC) vs New York Red Bulls (MLS)||Dillon Stadium; Hartford, Conn.|
|7 p.m. ET||Greenville Triumph SC (USLL1) vs Charlotte Football Club (MLS)||Triumph Stadium at Legacy Early College; Greenville, S.C.|
|7 p.m. ET||Orlando City (MLS) vs Tampa Bay Rowdies (USLC)||Osceola County Stadium; Kissimmee, Fla.|
|7:30 p.m. ET||Louisville City FC (USLC) vs St. Louis CITY 2 (MLSNP)||Lynn Family Stadium; Louisville, Ky.|
|7:30 p.m. ET||Atlanta United FC (MLS) vs Chattanooga Football Club (NISA)||Fifth Third Bank Stadium; Kennesaw, Ga.|
|6 p.m. CT||Forward Madison FC (USLL1) vs Minnesota United FC (MLS)||Breese Stevens Field; Madison, Wis.|
|7:30 p.m. CT||San Antonio FC (USLC) vs Austin FC (MLS)||Toyota Field; San Antonio, Texas|
|7:30 p.m. MT||Real Salt Lake (MLS) vs Northern Colorado Hailstorm FC (USLL1)||Rio Tinto Stadium; Sandy, Utah|
|7:30 p.m. MST||Phoenix Rising FC (USLC) vs New Mexico United (USLC)||Phoenix Rising Stadium at Wild Horse Pass; Chandler, Ariz.|
|7:30 p.m. PT||Sacramento Republic FC (USLC) vs Central Valley Fuego FC (USLL1)||Heart Health Park; Sacramento, Calif.|
|7:30 p.m. PT||Los Angeles Football Club (MLS) vs Orange County SC (USLC)||Banc of California Stadium; Los Angeles, Calif.|
FrontRowSoccer.com editor Michael Lewis has written a new book, ALIVE AND KICKING The incredible but true story of the Rochester Lancers. You can learn more about it or purchase it here: