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New Mexico United sweeps past NYCFC II, into Quarterfinals – Open Cup Roundup

By NICHOLAS MURRAY -, 05/22/24, 12:47AM EDT


Loudoun battles before falling to LAFC; Tulsa’s run comes to end at hands of Sporting KC

New Mexico United players celebrated with their traveling support after advancing past New York City FC II and into the Quarterfinals of the 2024 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup. | Photo courtesy New Mexico United

A dominant second-half performance sent New Mexico United into the Quarterfinals of the 2024 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup with a 3-0 victory against New York City FC II at Belson Stadium as Avionne Flanagan and Anthony Herbert each scored their first goals for the club around Talen Maples’ second of the season.

After a delayed kickoff, New York had the better of the opening half as Jacob Arroyave had the first close chance of the game in the 16th minute only to shoot wide from the top of the penalty area. Strahinja Tanasijevic also went close for the hosts nine minutes later with a header.

The hosts also went close early in the second half when Jovan Mijatovic pulled a shot wide of the right post, but the game then quickly turned in New Mexico’s favor. Flanagan got the ball rolling with an excellent finish from the left side of the penalty area that picked out the right corner of the net in the 50th minute and five minutes later NYCFC II was reduced to 10 players when Samuel Owusu was sent off for a hard challenge.

New Mexico quickly took advantage of being a player up as in the 65th minute Maples tucked home an angled cross from the left by Marco Micaletto after beating the offside trap off a short corner. His center back partner Hebert then got in on the action with four minutes to go as he reacted well to Greg Hurst’s shot being parried by New York goalkeeper Tomás Romero and stretched to head home to seal the victory.

LOS ANGELES FC 3, LOUDOUN UNITED FC 0: Loudoun United FC battled but was unable to overcome a strong Los Angeles FC lineup that saw United States international Timothy Tillman find the net, Denis Bouanga provide two assists and Cristian Olivera notch a goal and assist at BMO Field.

Tillman opened the scoring for LAFC as he turned home a cross-shot from Olivera at the top of the six-yard area in just the eighth minute, but Loudoun stuck to its plan and produced some opportunities of its own as the half progressed. Tommy McCabe fired just wide of the left post in the 14th minute, while early in the second half Abdellatif Aboukoura forced a low save from LAFC’s Abraham Romero.

Los Angeles put the game away in clinical fashion with two goals separated by nine minutes, however, as Bouanga first sprang Olivera on a counterattack in the 52nd minute for a powerful shot to the top-left corner from the right side of the penalty area. Tomás Ángel then added his first goal for LAFC just past the hour mark with a low shot off Bouanga’s second assist of the night to wrap up a spot in the Quarterfinals.

SPORTING KANSAS CITY 4, FC TULSA 0: Former USL Championship standout Felipe Hernandez scored a pair of goals to lead SKC to a comfortable victory at Children’s Mercy Park.

Tulsa goalkeeper Michael Creek was called into action early and often as Sporting impressed itself on the game, but the resistance was broken seven minutes before halftime as Hernandez’s low ball into the six-yard area from the left side deflected off a defender and into the net. Stephen Afrifa added a second for the hosts in first-half stoppage time before Hernandez struck again in the 63rd minute.

Marinos Tzionis wrapped up the scoring for SKC two minutes later before Sporting went for more, ending the night with 34 shots and 14 on target as Creek ended the night with 10 saves in a stellar individual display.

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