The New England Revolution returned to the US Open Cup Semifinals for the first time since 2001 with a 2-1 win over the Harrisburg City Islanders.
Andy Dorman and Taylor Twellman each scored early first half goals, but the underdogs from the USL Second Division would make it interesting in the final fifteen minutes.
Bucking the trend of past years, the Revolution came out with a first rate lineup and it showed early in the game. Shalrie Joseph’s pass found Dorman in the box at close range, and he gave the home side the 1-0 lead just four minutes into the contest. Less than 15 minutes later, Pat Noonan’s cross found the foot of Twellman to double their lead. New England controlled the majority of the play, but Harrisburg kept it close and refused to allow a third goal. The Revs missed a handful of chances, including a Twellman header that was destined for the back of the net, but Harrisburg midfielder David Schofield cleared the ball off the line.
The Revolution, in front of a rather scarse crowd at Gillette Stadium, seemed to put the game into cruise control until the 78th minute. Matt Tanzini came off the bench as a second half substitute for the City Islanders and launched a 30-yard free kick into the upper corner of the goal, leaving New England goalkeeper Matt Reis with no chance of making the save.
However, any momentum that shifted toward the underdogs for the final 12 minutes was dashed in the 90th when Harrisburg’s Anthony Calvano was shown a straight red card for recklessly colliding with Reis. After that, the Revs were able to kill the clock and close out the game.
The Revolution will move on to the Semifinals where they will host the Carolina RailHawks of the USL First Division on September 4.
NER – Andy Dorman (Joseph) – 4th
NER – Taylor Twellman (Noonan) – 17th
HAR – Matt Tanzini (unassisted) – 78th