For the second straight tournament game, Kelyn Rowe scored twice to send the New England Revolution to a 4-2 Fourth Round US Open Cup win over the New York Red Bulls at Harvard University on Wednesday. The Revolution advance to the Quarterfinals, traveling to face a DC United on Wednesday, June 26.
After scoring two goals in the May 28 Third Round 5-1 road win against Rochester, Rowe wasted no time putting his name on the scoresheet when he found paydirt in the fourth minute, then added another in the 37th minute. Fabian Espindola brought one back for the Red Bulls in the 30th minute, but Dimitry Imbongo netted what proved to be the game-winner in the 51st minute. Jonny Steele made it close when he scored in the 61st minute before Chris Tierney capped the scoring in the 87th minute.
“When he shoots in on goal, it’s usually going in,” Revolution head coach Jay Heaps said about Rowe after the game. “He’s got one of the best shots I’ve seen, right or left foot. He was fired up for tonight. Right from the open, his touch was on. His movement was good. His pressure was good. He had a nice night.”
The sophomore midfielder looked dangerous early, and from the attacking midfielder’s role, steered the offense right from the opening whistle. And it wasn’t long before he resumed his goalscoring exploits inside of four minutes when he grabbed a pass from Gabe Latigue and fired a shot that found the back of the net.
“I thought I’d catch (Ryan Meara) near post,” Rowe said. ”Last year, I caught him far post. I thought he’d think I was going there again. I got a lucky bounce over him so that was nice.”
New England tilted the pitch in their favor through the first 25 minutes before New York started to put pressure on the hosts.
At the half hour mark, Espindola, who menaced the likes of Tyler Polak and Kalifa Cisse in the early going, broke through when he ran toward a long ball that Matt Reis tried to poke away in front of the area. But Espindola beat him to it, pushed it toward the open net, and slit it through to level it.
Seven minutes later, Rowe responded when he grabbed a ball from outside the 18 and fired another long-range effort that beat Meara to put the Revolution back on top.
“I think Gabe Latigue made a run inside and pulled the defender out,” Rowe said. “And I thought, again, ‘I mean, I made the run, may as well shoot it’ and it ended up going far post.”
Rowe’s goal gave his club the edge going into the interval, but the Revolution widened the gap in the opening minutes of the second half.
This time, though, it was Imbongo who put his name on the scoresheet when he chased down a long ball and with only Meara to beat, slipped his shot into the net in the 51st minute.
The Red Bulls didn’t back down near the hour mark when Eric Alexander pushed it deep down the right flank and crossed it far post, where Steele nodded it into the net to cut the lead back down to one.
Although both attacks lost their polish and physical play became the rule after the hour, Tierney put the game out of reach for the Red Bulls when he made a run down the left and tapped through a dangerous far post cross from Ryan Guy in the 87th minute.
In the waning moments, Brandon Barklage picked up a second yellow and red card ejection to leave the Red Bulls a man down before the final whistle.
“We had a lot of guys that were ready to go,” Heaps said. ”You could tell that we started really well. I thought it probably should have been a little bit better. We probably could have been up 2-0 when (Espindola) scored. Unfortunately, it was a battle the rest of the way. We created a lot of chances and scored some goals.”
Fourth Round :: New York Red Bulls 2 :: 4 New England Revolution
June 12 – Soldiers Field Soccer Stadium – Harvard University Stadium, Boston MA
NE: Kelyn Rowe (Gabe Latigue) 4
NY: Fabian Espindola 30
NE: Kelyn Rowe 37
NE: Dimitry Imbongo (Darrius Barnes) 51
NY: Jonny Steele (Eric Alexander) 61
NE: Chris Tierney (Ryan Guy) 87
NY: Brandon Barklage 10, Fabian Espindola 24, Dax McCarty 45, Markus Holgersson 55, Brandon Barklage 91
NE: Kalifa Cisse 76, Darrius Barnes 78
NY: Brandon Barklage (second yellow) 91
New York: Ryan Meara; Heath Pearce, Brandon Barklage (ejection 91), Markus Holgersson, Kosuke Kimura (Andre Akpan 83); Eric Alexander, Juninho, Lloyd Sam (Peguy Luyindula 45), Dax McCarty, Jonny Steele; Fabian Espindola
New England: Matt Reis; AJ Soares, Darrius Barnes, Tyler Polak, Kalifa Cisse; Gabe Latigue, Kelyn Rowe (Scott Caldwell 58), Andy Dorman, Ryan Guy; Chad Barrett (Juan Agudelo 83), Dimitry Imbongo Boele (Chris Tierney 69)