Columbus Crew forward Steven Lenhart broke a 1-1 tie with a goal four minutes into stoppage time to send the Crew into the quarterfinals over the Rochester Rhinos of the USSF Second Division.
Columbus took control early on, and broke through first. Eddie Gaven crossed a corner into position, and Andy Iro headed the ball past Scott Vallow for a 1-0 lead. The Crew couldn’t capitalize on their dominance any further, and took the single goal into the half.
Rochester got going in the second half thanks to Darren Spicer, who subbed in for Ryan Heins at 62′. Spicer sparked the Rhinos immediately, and scored 7 minutes after coming in on a rocket from the edge off the box to tie the score at 1. The match continued evenly across the board until 84′ in, when Felix Motagalvan of the Rhinos tackled the Crew’s Emilio Renteria with his studs up, drawing a straight red card. This let Columbus take back control, and they pressed ahead hoping to avoid extra time. Four minutes of stoppage time were added, however it seemed that for all the Crew’s pressure, they were headed for extra time. That changed in an instant, as Eric Brunner’s long pass bounced off a Rhino defender and right to Lenhart, who capped the heroics with an edge-of-the-box shot that went through the right side of the net.
The Crew will host the Charleston Battery of USL-2 on Tuesday, July 6, attempting to avoid becoming the Battery’s second straight MLS victim.
CLB- Iro (Gaven) 30′
ROC- Spicer 69′
CLB- Lenhart 90+4′
ROC- Motagalvan 84′ (straight red, Serious foul)
ROC- Spicer for Heins, 62′
CLB- O’Rourke for Ekpo, 64′
CLB- Renteria for Duka, 70′
ROC- Kissi for Franks, 91′