GPS Omens, of the Bay State Soccer League, took down GPS Portland Phoenix of the PDL, 2-0, to advance to the Second Round of the 2017 Lamar Hunt US Open Cup. It was the second-ever Open Cup meeting between these two members of the Global Premier Soccer organization and Omens made good on avenging their 2-0 loss to Portland in the 2013 Second Round.
Jake Johnson opened up the affair early with a 2nd minute strike to give Omens the 1-0 lead at Memorial Park in Portland, Maine. But it was Ben Shuleva, centerback for the Omens, who really shone on the night.
Omens found themselves a set piece opportunity in the 25th minute of a relatively dominant first half. Shuleva came up from the backline and headed in the insurance goal.
Shuleva and Zach Abdu-Glass, the goalkeeper for Omens, kept the door shut on Portland despite ever mounting pressure on the visitors’ goal. Portland pounded four of their five shots at the Omens goal, but Abdu-Glass saved four of them to preserve the shutout.
“This game is historically a tough one for us as we have very little lead in time,” said Portland coach Craig Fannan after the match. “We were a little naive in the first half and got punished for it. We continued to push, never gave up and can count ourselves unlucky not to get back into the game.”
After their first win in Open Cup history, GPS Omens has a Boston derby to look forward to as they take on Boston City FC in the Second Round.