On a cold, 20-degree day in Minden, Nevada, BattleBorn FC of NISA Nation hosted Inter San Francisco FC of the San Francisco Soccer Football League in the fourth qualifying round, “Win and You’re In” contest. Despite the partly snowy field and slippery conditions, Inter San Francisco ran out 5-1 winners and qualified for their first ever Lamar Hunt US Open Cup.
Inter SF came into this game outscoring their opponents 14-0 through the opening three qualifying rounds.
Inter’s Matt Fondy has reached his third straight “Win and You’re In” contest (2020 qualifying with Olympic Club and 2022 qualifying with SF Metro FC), and in each case, the former pro had a hand in the scoring for his side. Today would see him grab a pair of goals.
The first half saw the visitors take charge of play with three goals in 21 minutes.
In the 16th minute, Javier Rivera opened the scoring with a close-range header from a long corner kick. Matt Fondy increased Inter’s lead to 2-0 in the 23rd, after receiving a short, chipped ball from a teammate. Fondy ran onto the bouncing ball and chipped his shot over the onrushing keeper. Despite the keeper getting a touch on the ball, Fondy’s shot carried into the net.
The final tally of the first half came in the 37th minute via Gamal Compaore. After receiving a cross from the right side from Fondy, Compaore settled, turned, and beat three opponents with a low shot up the middle. Inter SF went into halftime in cruise control with a 3-0 advantage.
The second half saw San Francisco continue their domination. Leo Lazaro would add a fourth goal with a shot from 17 yards out on a 2-on-1 breakaway. Finally, Fondy would complete his double, with a heroic effort from the outer corner of the penalty area to the upper 90 of the far post. BattleBorn would add a free kick from Jonathan Cuevas to brak the shutout, but it was not nearly enough on the day.
With the victory the almost three-year-old club qualifies for the 2023 US Open Cup in what has been a meteoric rise. Established in 2021, San Francisco began in the SFSFL First Division (3rd tier) then won promotion to the Majors Division in 2021. In the 2022 season Inter won the Major Division with a 15-3-2 record to move up to the Premier Division, the top tied of the SFSFL. Now, they can add a berth in the 108th edition of the US Open Cup to their resume.