In a battle of two teams from the Soccer Organization of the Charlottesville (Va.) Area, the Cville Alliance Reserves came away with a 3-1 win over Tigres FC in the opening round of the 2019 Lamar Hunt US Open Cup qualifying tournament. With light rainfall and a darkened sky, the Alliance, a club formerly known as Aromas Cafe FC that qualified for the 2016 US Open Cup, took over in the second half to punch their ticket to the second round.
To start the game, both teams played incredibly fast paced and aggressive, attempting to score early and take the advantage. The first half was filled with long balls behind defenses and aggressive runs up the sides by the attacking players. The defenders did not let up either, making sure to close out and chase their man, putting a lot of pressure on the man with the ball.
With a free kick at the 29-minute mark, Cville scored their first goal when midfielder Ivan Arapovic crossed in the ball where captain Price Thomas was able to head it into the back of the net.
The second half brought stronger rain, colder temperatures, and the same amount of intensity that highlighted the first half. Tigres had some great runs led by their two standout players, Erivaldo Da Silva and Tlotzin Chaveste Alatorre.
Unfortunately for Tigres, at the 60-minute mark, Cville scored their second goal as Alan Koger crossed in a corner and Evan Nesterak was able to jump over his defender and head it in to give the Alliance the two goal lead.
The match continued to be hard fought, Erivaldo Da Silva had some really great chances near the goal but none were able to find the back of the net. Yet even with the hard effort from Tigres and some very near misses, the Alliance put the game out of reach when Seyedehsan Monazamialipour crossed the ball just before going out of bounds, finding a wide open Luke Oostdyk on the right side for an easy header in the 87th minute.
Tigres unwilling to end the game in a shutout finally scored when Da Silva got to the ball as it was being knocked around on the Alliance’s defensive side and drilled a shot in to give Tigres their only goal.
The match was hard-fought on both sides as well incredible to watch, both teams flew up and down the pitch, both sides playing like a team instead of a group of individuals. In the end, it ends with a 3-1 victory for the Charlottesville Alliance.