Highmark Stadium held its first Open Cup game on Tuesday and it did not hold back on the dramatics as the USL Pro’s Pittsburgh Riverhounds defeated amateur side RWB Adria 5-4 in penalty kicks after ending regulation tied at 1-1.
Riverhounds goalkeeper Greg Blum – who last faced a shootout in college at Slippery Rock University – was shaky, never making a stop. Matthew Dallman put Pittsburgh ahead and Kevin Kerr clinched the victory after Adria’s fourth shooter, Johnny Morris, hit the crossbar.
“The win doesn’t feel as good as I thought it was going to feel,” said Pittsburgh coach Justin Evans. “We still have a few things to look at.”
A group of 1,400 people saw Pittsburgh stay unbeaten through four matches this season, the last two being victories at home. The Riverhounds are currently 10th in the USL Pro table, with a 1-4-3 record. The Riverhounds move on to play the Ocean City Nor’easters in the second round on May 21.
Adria took an early lead, with a goal from Carlos Munoz as he slipped through the Riverhounds defense to catch them off guard and to go up 1-0 in the 17th minute. Despite the lead, Pittsburgh leaded in shots (5) and corners (4) at the break.
Pittsburgh found an equalizer in the second half.
Seth C’deBaca scored from the top of the 18-yard box on a play that started from a Rob Vincent corner in the 53rd minute. After a redirect and an assist from Mike Green, C’deBaca notched his first of the season.
“It’s something I’ve needed,” he said about the goal.
The rest of regulation was very back and forth as fatigue started to settle in for both sides. That led to a few injury stoppages and cautions from the referee. All the yellow cards came in the second half and beyond, with Adria totaling four and to Pittsburgh three, all of which were labeled as unnessecary behavior.
Extra time is where the Riverhounds almost took the victory. They registered five shots in the overtime periods, with three of them coming from forward Jose Angulo.
It was also some impressive goalkeeping from Adria’s Igor Dimov that kept the Chicago-based side in through the tail end of the game.
SHOTS: Pittsburgh: 17, RWB Adria: 4
SAVES: Pittsburgh: 2, RWB Adria: 6
CORNERS: Pittsburgh: 15, RWB Adria: 2
FOULS: Pittsburgh: 19, RWB Adria: 19
OFFSIDES: Pittsburgh: 3, RWB Adria: 6