The draw for the first two rounds of the US Open Cup occurred at US Soccer House in Chicago on Tuesday morning. The draw sets up the enticing potential of an Alamo Derby as San Antonio FC could face Corinthians FC SA in the second round should Corinthians win their opening match.
That first match sends Corinthians FC SA north on I-35 to Dallas, as they take on US Amateur Soccer Association team, NTX Rayados in the first round. That match will take place on May 11th, with the winner getting the right to play San Antonio FC in the second round.
While Corinthians FC SA will go in to the match confident of beating the USASA side, the Rayados will be a tough test, having qualified for the tournament for five straight years. But in all those times NTX Rayados have only advanced only once, defeating the Austin Aztex in 2014 on penalties.
Soccer fans in San Antonio have been excited since the draw, as they look forward to the possibility of an Alamo Derby in that second round match. Should Corinthians FC SA get through the first round that is what San Antonio fans have to look forward to.
The match would actually be the second ever Alamo Derby as the two teams played each other in March in a San Antonio FC pre-season match. On that occasion, San Antonio FC claimed the win 2-1, with a late goal giving San Antonio FC the win after a stretched Corinthians FC SA defense couldn’t keep things going. The US Open Cup should see an even better match as the two teams will be much more prepared creating a great atmosphere, which will see the fans of San Antonio torn on who to support.
San Antonio FC has got their league history off to a perfect start as they managed an impressive 3-0 win over Seattle Sounders 2 at Starfire Sports Complex on Sunday evening. Two goals came early from Jason Johnson and that allowed San Antonio to cruise to the win in Tukwila, WA.
It took just three minutes for San Antonio to open the scoring after some strong work from the visitors, passing it around well. That allowed Greg Cochrane to get a delicate touch on, playing Jason Johnson through on goal. Johnson rode a challenge and got clean through in the box, he shot the ball across the face, out of the reach of the keeper and in to the back of the net.
Before ten minutes were on the clock San Antonio FC were able to double their lead, and again it was Johnson who was at it. After a clearance was misjudged by the Seattle defender, Johnson stole possession and easily rounded the keeper before passing the ball in to the back of the net to double San Antonio’s lead.
With such a big lead, San Antonio was able to settle more defensively throughout the rest of the half. That allowed Seattle opportunities to control possession a little more but most of that possession was in their defensive half as they struggled to have a real impact on the San Antonio FC defense, who took a 2-0 lead in to half-time.
The second half saw Seattle come out much more offensively as they went for the match, looking to take the match to San Antonio. But again for all of that they just could not get the chances away, with all their territory being deep in their own half.
Seattle was made to pay for not taking advantage of their big possession, as San Antonio managed to make it three with just over ten minutes to play. After coming on to the field two minutes earlier, Fejiro Okiomah made his presence felt after Rafael Castillo’s shot was deflected and fell to Okiomah who buried the chance, sealing San Antonio the 3-0 win.
In an all San Antonio battle it was Reagan who came out victorious and advanced to the regional quarterfinals to continue their impressive season. One goal was enough as Reagan got past Jay in a thrilling Area-Playoff at Blossom Soccer Complex on Friday night.
Reagan started the match well taking the game to Jay from the start in a rematch of one of the most thrilling matches of the 2016 varsity season. In the 15th minute the Rattlers had a great opportunity when Chaise Thiel got a powerful shot away which was well saved by the keeper.
Just three minutes later only a stunning save kept the match scoreless when Justin Sukow got a powerful shot away. But the keeper moved well, saving it with his legs to keep the match scoreless in impressive style.
That saw Jay clear the ball and launch a strong counter-attack that looked to catch out the over-committed Rattlers. But not to be out done Reagan scrambled back and a desperate defensive block kept the match scoreless at the half.
The second half was a much tighter affair, with the sides really being bogged down in midfield, which created few chances. Those chances that did come were thanks to set-pieces, with Reagan perhaps just edging it for clear chances.
So it was unsurprising when it was a set piece that gave Reagan the opening goal in the 76th minute, leaving Jay little time to recover. Sukow was able to send in a corner, which was perfectly sent to Thiel who headed it home clinically.
With almost no time remaining Jay, who came through on penalties in the first round, were forced to attack. But the time was against them and despite their best efforts they couldn’t find a goal, sending Reagan through to the regional quarter-finals.