Seattle Sounders FC eliminate Sacramento Republic FC from 2024 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup



      Sacramento Republic FC midfielder Cristian Parano dribbles past defenders in the U.S. Open Cup quarterfinal against MLS side Seattle Sounders on July 9, 2024 at Heart Health Park. 

      SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Sacramento Republic FC welcomed four-time Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup winners Seattle Sounders FC to Heart Health Park for a quarterfinal showdown.

      Sacramento Republic FC made their way to the quarterfinal after beating MLS side San Jose Earthquakes in the Round of 16 on May 21st. Meanwhile, Seattle Sounders FC battled Phoenix Rising FC on May 22nd to reach this stage. 

      The game got off to a hot start as Sounders goalkeeper Andrew Thomas slipped up on what looked like a routine play inside his own 18 box, seeing Kieran Phillips pick-up his scraps, but not being able to capitalize on the mistake. 

      Sacramento Republic FC midfielder Nick Ross picked up yellow card early in the 4th minute, but would not condition his crafty yet gritty style of play. 

      More action took place in the 16th minute of the game when Seattle Sounder and recently named to the USA Olympic team, Josh Atencio, scored off a clearance by the Sacramento Republic FC defense and into the net courtesy of a deflection. 

      For the Quails, Cristian Parano and Damia Viader combined in a one-two play resulting in a shot by Parano at the 22nd mark. The ball sniffled slowly past Thomas's left post, making the goaltender shake for a second, but igniting the home crowd. 

      The famous Tower Bridge Battalion and the rest of Heart Health Park would go silent nine minutes later as Jordan Morris scored the second goal for the visiting side. Seattle Sounders midfielder Andrew Thomas played a perfectly thru ball behind the Sacramento line allowing for Morris to simply take a touch forward and get past Republic goalkeeper Danny Vitiello. 

      Vitiello would keep the game within reach right before halftime, offering the crowd a spectacular diving one-handed save after a header by Sounders center back Yeimar Gómez in the 45th minute. 

      Whatever pep talk Sacramento Republic FC head coach Mark Briggs gave to the Quails at halftime, worked and it showed immediately.

      SRFC made a few adjustments and came out firing, getting on the board in the 49th minute courtesy of Sebastian Herrera. A perfectly executed corner kick by defender Jack Gurr found Sebastian's head and into the back of the net. This marked Herrera's third goal of the year and second in Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup play.

      Argentinian terror Christian Parano continued causing danger in the second half, this time dribbling past several defenders and coming close to scoring in the 57th minute. 

      The game continued to be dominated in the second half by Sacramento Republic, forcing Seattle Sounders FC head coach Brian Schmetzer to make modifications. One of those adjustments was bringing in Peruvian striker Raul Ruidiaz, who proved to be a threat in the 68th minute with a clean header inside the six yard box. 

      Denying the goal and with another magnificent save was Danny Vitiello keeping the scoreline 2-1. 

      More attempts, fouls and even a disallowed goal occurred in the final minutes of the game until referee Ted Unkel blew the final whistle resulting in a 2-1 loss for the Sacramento Republic FC. 

      “When you see the team sheet, that tells you everything. Jordan Morris and Albert Rusnak… they are practically the team that played on Saturday. So that gives a lot of respect… that shows that we're a good team," said head coach Mark Briggs. "We're a good club. We're in the right place and they knew that tonight was going to be a difficult game. So everyone here should be proud. The fans are excellent. The team is excellent. We were just unfortunate with the results."

      Sacramento Republic FC will now focus on USL Championship league play as they welcome North Carolina FC to Heart Health Park this coming Saturday, July 13 with kickoff set to 8:00 pm PT. 


      Sacramento Republic FC 1 - 2 Seattle Sounders FC

      Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Quarterfinals

      Heart Health Park, Sacramento, California

      July 9, 2024

      Scoring Summary: SAC – Herrera (Gurr) 49’; SEA – Atencio 16’, Morris (Baker-Whiting) 31’

      Misconduct Summary: SAC – Ross (caution) 5’, Parano (caution) 50’, Gurr (caution) 56’; SEA – none

      Sacramento Republic FC: Danny Vitiello, Lee Desmond (C), Jared Timmer, Shane Wiedt (Jonathan Ricketts 84’), Jack Gurr, Aldair Sanchez (Blake Willey 90’), Damia Viader (Sebastian Herrera 45’), Nick Ross, Luis Felipe, Cristian Parano (Conor Donovan 90’+), Kieran Phillips (Trevor Amann 69’)

      Unused substitutes: Jared Mazzola, Rafael Jauregui

      Stats: Shots: 11, Shots on Goal: 2, Saves: 2, Fouls: 20, Corner Kicks: 2, Offsides: 3

      Seattle Sounders FC: Andrew Thomas, Nouhou, Jon Bell, Yeimar Gomez, Cristian Roldan (C), Joao Paulo (Alex Roldan 62’), Josh Atencio (Danny Musovski 90’), Reed Baker-Whiting (Obed Vargas 81‘), Albert Rusnak (Jackson Ragen 89’), Paul Rothrock (Raul Ruidiaz 62’), Jordan Morris 

      Unused Substitutes: Jacob Castro, Pedro de la Vega

      Stats: Shots: 9, Shots on Goal: 4, Saves: 1, Fouls: 13, Corner Kicks: 4, Offsides: 5 

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