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Rising lets lead slip, Sounders grab late winner to advance in Open Cup

By NICHOLAS MURRAY -, 05/23/24, 1:07AM EDT


Cabral’s first-half penalty kick gave Phoenix hope before Kossa-Rienzi scored winner in 88th minute for hosts

Photo courtesy Seattle Sounders FC

Phoenix Rising FC made history a season ago with road heroics on its underdog path to winning a title.

With the chance to record the deepest run in the club’s history in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, the magic ran out.

Remi Cabral gave Rising a late first-half lead from the penalty spot, but the reigning USL Championship title holders were eliminated by four-time Open Cup winner Seattle Sounders FC, which rallied before a late winner from 21-year-old Kalani Kossa-Rienzi earned the hosts a 2-1 victory at Starfire Stadium to advance to the Quarterfinals of the 2024 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup on Wednesday night.

Rising had the first good look for either side on the night in the 10th minute as Panos Armenakas played a piercing through-ball that set Cabral off behind the Sounders’ defense, only for his low effort to the left corner to be turned away by Seattle goalkeeper Andrew Thomas. The hosts then started to create chances of their own, including a golden opportunity for Danny Musovski set up by Cristian Roldan that somehow didn’t result in the opening goal in the 43rd minute.

The visitors were able to set at least part of the game’s tempo, however, and in first-half stoppage time they found a breakthrough. Armenakas made a shifty run into the right side of the penalty area and was brought down by Danny Leyva as he slid in to try and tackle. Cabral stepped up and calmly shot into the bottom-right corner of the net, sending Rising to the locker room ahead.

As comfortable as Phoenix looked in possession in the first half, the second was a different story. Seattle began to not only dominate possession but also territory as Phoenix was pinned back in its own half. Cabral might have doubled the visitors’ lead just past the hour-mark as he surged past the last defender but was unable to get a clean finish off under pressure from Thomas and a trailing defender.

Four minutes later, Seattle’s pressure told as a shot by Alex Roldan took a deflection off a sliding defender and was handled in the penalty area. Alex Roldan stepped up and fired home to the left corner just beyond the dive of Phoenix goalkeeper Patrick Rakovsky.

The Sounders continued to push as the second half continued, with 42.8 percent of the second half played in Phoenix’s defensive third, and with two minutes to go the winner arrived. An initial cross was cleared by Phoenix out of the penalty area, but a shot was chopped back into the penalty area by the hosts and came to Musovski, whose header found Kossa-Rienzi and allowed him to shift onto his right foot for a sharp finish from 10 yards into the top-right corner, ending Phoenix’s run.

Scoring Summary
– Remi Cabral (penalty kick) 45+5’
SEA – Alex Roldan (penalty kick) 68’
SEA – Kalani Kossa-Rienzi (Danny Musovski) 88’

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