June 10, 2009
That was one of the crazier Rhinos games I ever remember being at.
T-Bone almost gets red carded in the first minute after picking up a yellow and arguing long after the referee wanted the conversation to end.
Then T-Bone scores to put the Riverhounds up.
T-Bone cracks Menyongar and is lucky to not pick up a second caution.
T-Bone gets sent off in the 2nd half.
There ends up being 4 minutes of stoppage time with the Rhinos trying to level the match.
Atieno gets on the end of an Ambersley corner and a Riverhound almost clears it off the line to no avail.
We go to OT, where not much happens in the first session.
Late in the second, Salles draws a PK (his best play of the game since almost pummeling #18 to death on back to back free kicks into the wall early in the match), but Atieno puts it off the woodwork.
We go to PKs and who's up first? Atieno of course! And of course he puts it off the woodwork. Again.
Pittsburgh converts. 1-0 Hounds after the 1st Round.
Gregor converts and Vallow makes a big save. Vallow does the Anti-New England celebration by making the universal "calm down" signal. 1-1 after the 2nd round.
Bertz converts after the two step approach (Is it me or do a ton of defenders use that approach to PKs?) and Vallow makes another big save. Scott goes with the Calm Down "celebration" again, but the fans aren't listening to him. 2-1 Rhinos after the 3rd round.
Salles and the Riverhound both convert. 3-2 Rhinos after the 4th round.
Tiger steps up with the game on his left foot. He strikes it. The keeper guesses correctly. The keeper just misses the ball. The ball strikes the woodwork. Then it hits the keeper and trickles across the goal line. Rhinos win 4-2 on PKs to face Cleveland at home on Tuesday.
My indoor teammate turns to me and goes "The keeper would have been better off guessing WRONG!"
And thus ended one of the craziest games in a while.
It was far from perfect, but it's all about survive and advance in cup play.
The Rhinos did just enough to advance. And they get a favorable draw in Cleveland. Hopefully they can get Danny Earls and Ryan Heins healthy and they can get another confidence builder in Cleveland on Saturday.
News & Notes:
- Devo has a cool flashback to the 1999 Open Cup run on his blog with an article following that year's opener versus the New York Freedom.
- Brent Sancho was named to the USL Team of the Week.
- This is a very interesting take on how the USMNT hasn't really made any traction over the past decade or so. I want to argue against it, but it's hard.
- This Is American Soccer.com has a really good article on soccer and Sports Illustrated. TIAS.com is all about quality over quantity.
- This is a cool piece on what the Hunt Family should do to aid ailing FC Dallas. I vote for moving the team to Rochester!
- Here are the rest of the US Open Cup 1st Round results. The Rhinos were the only team that needed PKs to advance.
The views and opinions expressed in this column are those of the author, and not necessarily those of the Rochester Rhinos or SoccerSam.com. Feel free to send any comments or complaints to firstname.lastname@example.org. James promises to read (but not to respond) to all of them.