Oklahoma City Energy FC goalkeeper CJ Cochran didn’t have much to do for 120 minutes of his team’s US Open Cup matchup Wednesday with amateur side Mississippi Brilla FC (PDL).
Cochran didn’t fare too well when the game went to a shootout, watching the first nine Brilla penalty kicks settle into his net.
The Georgia native came up big in the end though, saving the home side’s last two spot kicks before burying his own to lead Energy FC to a 10-9 shootout victory after a scoreless game at Traceway Park.
Oklahoma City’s USL side advances to face intra-city foe Rayo OKC in the third round of the US Open Cup. Rayo OKC, a first-year NASL side, will host the first-ever meeting of the two teams on June 1.
Energy FC controlled play in its first match of the 2016 US Open Cup, but scoring chances were hard to come by against Brilla FC’s dogged defense.
Brilla FC advanced to the second round by defeating CD Motagua of New Orleans in first round play on May 11.
On Wednesday, the Oklahoma team dominated possession – and easily snuffed out rare threats from Brilla FC — yet it was unable to put the ball past goalkeeper Brendan Ledgeway.
Ledgeway ably marshalled Brilla’s backline to prevent Energy FC’s possession from translating into goals.
Danni Konig, who broke the USL scoring record last year, was a persistent threat on the Premier Development League side’s goal, but poor touches and staunch defending kept him off the scoresheet.
Konig had two prime chances snuffed out by a Brilla defender in the closing minutes of regulation after Luis Martinez settled a cross into the box.
Both teams had chances to break the deadlock in extra time, but neither was sharp enough to convert.
That changed once the game moved to penalty kicks, as the first nine shooters for each team scored.
Brilla’s Ledgeway stepped to the spot and easily converted his team’s seventh penalty kick, after managing to get his fingertips to two Energy FC attempts that still found the back of the net.
In the 10th round of the shootout, Ledgway answered Cochran’s first save with one of his own to keep Brilla FC in the match before Energy FC converted its final kick to secure the win.
Energy FC captain Michael Thomas said the game was a “tough battle” in post-match comments on Twitter. He said the team “should have put plenty (of chances) away today,” but still managed to find a way to win.