Michael Berton and Jeff Livezey contributed to this report.
The Eastern Pennsylvania Soccer Association’s Open Cup semifinals will take place on Sunday afternoon in two different Philadelphia area locations beginning at 2 p.m.
The final four features one of the oldest clubs in the country, the defending state champion, an over-30 team and a team making their Open Cup qualifying debut.
You can follow in-game updates of both matches on TheCup.us’ Twitter account @USOpenCup.
Cavalla FC at West Chester United – 2 p.m.
WC turf field in West Chester, PA – MAP
Reigning champions West Chester United are looking to win the tournament for the second game in a row, but to do that, they will have to go through newcomers Cavalla FC.
United, one of three USLPA teams left in the tournament, advanced to this point after receiving a bye in the first round and dispatching Quakertown SC by a 4-0 scoreline in the second round. West Chester will be hosting for the second week in a row.
Cavalla FC also got to this point by winning 4-0 in the quarterfinals. After defeating the Ukrainian Nationals 1-0 in the first round, Cavalla defeated Salone FC. Cavalla is looking to win a title in its first attempt at US Open qualification. The winner of this match will take on either Predators or United German Hungarians in the final on Dec. 16.
Predators at United German Hungarians – 2 p.m.
UGH Field in Oakford, PA – MAP
The match between the United German Hungarians and the Predators will be much anticipated as a contrasting match-up. UGH is a storied club in Pennsylvania with a soccer history that dates back to 1922 (the club itself was founded in 1910). UGH’s rich history includes being the Open Cup runner-up twice in 1977 and 1993, and having won the state Open Cup title five teams since 1997. The Predators are making their first appearance in the Open Cup tournament.
On the other side of the field, you have the Predators, with a roster made up of pros, semi-pros, and even some Union academy players is very competitive. When Karl Zandi founded this club 5 years ago, with his main goal to be a competitive over-30 club. Winning the state over-30 cup in 2010 and winning almost every game they play in the Inter County Soccer League, they have achieved their main goal of being a competitive team.
After receiving a first round bye, UGH reached the semifinals for the fifth year in a row with a 3-0 win over Junior Lone Star. Elsion Pajolarri scored a brace, while Uche Onyeador added another to lead the way. The Predators, who began play in Round 1 with a surprising 1-0 win over tournament regular Vereinigung Erzgebirge, needed penalty kicks to reach the semis. After finishing the game in a scoreless draw with Nether United, the Preds won the PK shootout 7-6 to move on.
The two teams will square off at UGH Field in Oakford at 2 p.m.
2013 Eastern PA Open Cup Tournament
(home team listed second)
First Round (Nov. 11) [+] Recap
Cavalla FC 1:0 Ukrainian Nationals (Oct. 28)
Quakertown 3:2 Colonial Ultras
Junior Lone Star 6:0 Mayfair Celtic
Nether United 1:1 Phoenix SC (Nether United advances, 7-6 in PKs)
Predators 1:0 Vereinigung Erzgebirge
Quarterfinals (Dec. 2)
Quakertown 0:4 West Chester United
Cavalla FC 4:0 Salone
Junior Lone Star 0:3 United German Hungarians
Predators 0:0 Nether United (Predators advance 5-4 in PKs)
Semifinals (Dec. 9 – 2 p.m.)
Cavalla FC at West Chester United
Predators at United German Hungarians
Final (Dec. 16)
Cavalla FC/West Chester vs. Predators/UGH
Past Eastern PA Open Cup champions:
1997: United German Hungarians
1998: United German Hungarians
1999: United German Hungarians*
2000: United German Hungarians
2002: Vereinigung Erzgebirge*
2003: Ukrainian Nationals
2004: Lighthouse SC
2005: Ukrainian Nationals
2006: Ukrainian Nationals
2007: Vereinigung Erzgebirge (Runner-up Ukrainian Nationals also qualified for Region I Finals)
2008: United German Hungarians
2009: Vereinigung Erzgebirge
2010: Phoenix SC
2011: Phoenix SC*
2012: West Chester United Predators
* Qualified for the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup