Photo courtesy FC Cincinnati
FC Cincinnati and Louisville City FC will meet for the first time in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup when the River Cities Cup rivals square off in the Third Round on May 31 at Nippert Stadium. The game is one of four in the final round before the entry of clubs from Major League Soccer to the tournament that will feature two USL clubs squaring off with each other, with the league’s 16 teams the largest remaining contingent of clubs outside the top flight remaining in the competition.
Louisville and Cincinnati took differing routes to the Third Round, with City romping to a 9-0 victory against Tartan Devils Oak Avalon on Wednesday night, and FCC grabbing a 1-0 victory in overtime against AFC Cleveland.
Other all-USL contests in the Third Round including another of the league’s best rivalries, with Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC and OKC Energy FC set to square off at Weidner Field. Regional rivals Tulsa Roughnecks FC and San Antonio will also meet at the Hurricane Track & Field Stadium in Tulsa, while Sacramento Republic FC will play host to Reno 1868 FC at Papa Murphy’s Park after 1868 FC came through a penalty shootout to earn victory in the first Open Cup game in the club’s history.
Another pair of USL clubs will be on home turf as they look to advance to the Fourth Round. The Rochester Rhinos will face amateur side GPS Omens at Capelli Sport Stadium, while Phoenix Rising FC will host the San Francisco Deltas at the Phoenix Rising Soccer Complex.
The six remaining USL clubs to advance will hit the road, with Saint Louis FC visiting the PDL’s Michigan Bucks after the Bucks earned victory against Indy Eleven in the Second Round. After earning a penalty shootout victory in Ocean City, Harrisburg City Islanders will face PDL opposition for a second straight round as they visit Reading United AC, which defeated the New York Cosmos to advance on Wednesday night.
The Tampa Bay Rowdies get a trip downstate as they visit Miami FC, while the Charleston Battery will meet Jacksonville Armada FC for a second consecutive year in this round. The Charlotte Independence also get a rematch from the past two years as they visit North Carolina FC, while Orange County SC will visit L.A. Wolves FC.
U.S. Open Cup – Third Round
Wednesday, May 31
Rochester Rhinos (USL) vs. GPS Omens (Mass.), 7 p.m. ET, Capelli Sport Stadium; Rochester, N.Y.
Jacksonville Armada (NASL) vs. Charleston Battery (USL), 7 p.m. ET, Southern Oak Stadium; Jacksonville, Fla.
FC Cincinnati (USL) vs. Louisville City FC (USL), 7 p.m. ET, Nippert Stadium; Cincinnati, Ohio
Reading United AC (PDL) vs. Harrisburg City Islanders (USL), 7:30 p.m. ET, Exeter Township; Reading, Pa.
North Carolina FC (NASL) vs. Charlotte Independence (USL), 7:30 p.m. ET, Sahlen’s Stadium at WakeMed Soccer Park; Cary, N.C.
Miami FC (NASL) vs. Tampa Bay Rowdies (USL), 7:30 p.m. ET, FIU Stadium; Miami, Fla.
Chicago FC United (PDL) vs. Christos FC (Md.), TBD, home team TBD
Michigan Bucks (PDL) vs. Saint Louis FC (USL), 7:30 p.m. ET, Ultimate Soccer Arenas; Pontiac, Mich.
Tulsa Roughnecks FC (USL) vs. San Antonio FC (USL), 8 p.m. ET, Hurricane Soccer & Track Stadium; Tulsa, Okla.
Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC (USL) vs. OKC Energy FC (USL), 9 p.m. ET, Weidner Field; Colorado Springs, Colo.
Phoenix Rising FC (USL) vs. San Francisco Deltas (NASL), 10:30 ET, Phoenix Rising Soccer Complex; Scottsdale, Ariz.
L.A. Wolves FC (Calif.) vs. Orange County SC (USL), 10:30 p.m. ET, Azusa Pacific University Soccer Field; Azusa, Calif.
Sacramento Republic FC (USL) vs. Reno 1868 FC (USL), 10:30 p.m. ET, Papa Murphy’s Park; Sacramento, Calif.