Indy Eleven Exit U.S. Open Cup via 0-2 Added Extra Time Loss to Louisville City FC
“Boys in Blue” Crash Out of Tournament after Louisville Bags Pair of Goals in Final Five Minutes of Overtime
Advancement to the fourth round of the 102nd edition of the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup was at stake at IUPUI’s Michael A. Carroll Stadium on Wednesday night, and it was visiting Louisville City FC who converted two goals late in added extra time to take a 2-0 third round win over Indy Eleven.
Louisville City FC used two extra time goals, and a dominating performance from Scott Goodwin to shock the 7,134 Indy Eleven fans in attendance at the soccer stadium. Louisville will now travel to take on the Chicago Fire after a 2-0 win over Indy Eleven in City’s first ever extra time match.
After waiting out a weather delay that pushed kickoff back an hour, Louisville City would have the game’s first quality chance via a set piece in the eighth minute. A well swung corner kick found the head of forward Austen King in the center of the penalty area which he put nicely on target, but Indy keeper Kristian Nicht was up to the challenge, making the save look routine.
Indy followed with an opportunity of its own just minutes later in the 13th minute. Striker Wojciech Wojcik corralled a loose ball just outside of the box and curled in a shot with the outside of his boot towards the Louisville net, but ‘keeper Scott Goodwin came flying across the goal line to make a terrific save and keep the game level at nil.
There were plenty of fouls in the half in an increasingly physical first half, but the lone caution came in the 17th minute when King was handed a yellow for an extended clutching of Don Smart’s jersey at midfield.
Indy Eleven had perhaps the most perilous attack of the half in the 23rd minute when Smart worked with fellow Jamaican Brian Brown to get into the penalty area. However, Brown’s pass was left behind Smart’s reach, and while he still made a chance out of it the resulting shot on the turn lacked power and would not trouble Goodwin.
Possession would go back and forth in the midfield for the remainder of the half, but neither team would muster up much attacking power, leaving them to enter the locker rooms tied at zero.
Louisville opened the second half with a threatening attack in the 51st minute, when forward Ilija Ilic slipped behind the Indy backline and was found by a teammate at the top of the 18. From there he took one touch to gather himself before sending a rocket towards goal which deflected off of Nicht’s left shoulder and soared into the air before the German netminder backtracked to collect and end the attack.
From there on out, chances would be hard to come by until the last few minutes of regulation as both teams pushed numbers forward, desperately trying for the winning goal. Controversy arose in the 89thminute as Indy Eleven’s Charlie Rugg sent a cross into the penalty area that seemed destined for Brown, who appeared to have a step on Louisville defender Tarek Morad. Morad looked to come barreling over Brown just yards in front of goal, but the referee saw differently and no call to the spot was made.
In the end, 90 minutes proved not to be enough for the two sides as regulation finished in a scoreless draw. Indy Eleven showed some signs of life early in the first added extra time period through substitute Dylan Mares. The product of both the University of Louisville and Indiana University saw two consecutive shots of his trouble Goodwin in the 92nd and 93rd minutes, but neither were threatening enough for Louisville to be picking out of the back of the net.
The visitors had a chance a great chance of their own in the 96th minute as a shot from defender Adam West skipped along the damp Carroll Stadium turf and towards the goal, but Nicht made an acrobatic attempt to smother the ball just before it could cross the goalline.
Indy Eleven looked the team more poised to take the lead across the extra half hour, with chances off a Mares driven set piece in the 105th minute and a shot from distance by Osman Melgares in the 113thminute causing nervous moments for the visitors, but ultimately doing no damage.
The breakthrough would finally come in the 115th minute, though, for Louisville City FC. Indy defender Greg Janicki went sliding into a challenge at the top of the penalty area and cleared it to midfield, where Louisville recollected and sent a pass to an isolated Nate Polak at the top of the 18. Polak did as he has often done of late and converted his opportunity into a goal, sending a shot skipping past Nicht and into the lower right corner to give the away team a 1-0 lead.
The visitors weren’t done yet. Just moments later in the 119th minute, Louisville would get three bites of the apple a vital insurance goal when Sidney Rivera scored on an open net in the box off a shot that hit the crossbar. This seconds after Matt Fondy was in alone on goal but stopped by Nicht.
Via the dramatic 2-0 scoreline, Lousiville City FC now advances to take on the Chicago Fire of Major League Soccer in the U.S. Open Cup’s fourth round on either June 16th or 17th at Toyota Park in Bridgeview, Ill.
Indy Eleven (1W-3D-3L, 6 pts. in NASL play) won’t have much time to think about tonight’s disappointing loss, as the “Boys in Blue” return to Carroll Stadium in three days’ time on Saturday, May 30, to face off against the Tampa Bay Rowdies (3W-3D-1L, 12 pts.) in both teams’ return to NASL Spring Season action.
Quote Sheet – Indy Eleven Head Coach Juergen Sommer
On the disappointing result:
“It was a back and forth game. I thought Louisville started bright as well. As the game progressed, I felt that we became increasingly dangerous and that was good to see. We did create a couple of good chances in front of goal, but we have to put those away to win games like this. I knew it was going to be a mistake or a special goal to separate both teams, and that unfortunately didn’t fall our way.”
On his team’s defensive effort throughout the match:
“Defensively we kept our shape tonight and I’m pleased with that. We got some great efforts from some guys, but the games are won and lost in the defensive third. [Louisville] made a great effort and banged in that first goal which obviously put them ahead to win the game, but we had an equal if not more amount of chances in front goal. If we can’t finish then we’re not going to win these types of games. I know the group is disappointed with the ability to put the ball in the back of the net because we’re better than what the scoreline showed tonight.”
On how to bounce back from the loss:
“There’s only one way to go, and that’s up. We have got to pick these guys up because we are going to face a very good Tampa Bay Rowdies team [on Saturday] that are quite sharp. It is another test for us, and that just shows the quality of the teams in our league week in and week out. There’s no rest for the weary. We just have to step back up and be ready to play a great game.”
Indy Eleven 0 : 2 Louisville City FC (AET)
102nd Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup – Third Round
Wednesday, May 27, 2015
Michael A. Carroll Stadium – Indianapolis, IN
LOU: Nate Polak (unassisted) 115’
LOU: Sidney Rivera (unassisted) 120’
LOU: Austen King (caution) 17’
IND: Greg Janicki (caution) 57’
IND: Wojciech Wojcik (caution) 83’
LOU: Sidney Rivera (caution) 120’
Indy Eleven line-up (4-1-4-1): Kristian Nicht; Marco Franco, Greg Janicki (capt.), Erick Norales, Kyle Hyland; Daniel Keller (Duke Lacroix 95’); Don Smart (Charlie Rugg 58’), Victor Pineda (Dylan Mares 63’), Osman Melgares, Brian Brown; Wojciech Wojcik
Indy Bench: Keith Cardona (GK), Jaime Frias, Cory Miller, Dragan Stojkov
Louisville City FC line-up (4-3-3): Scott Goodwin; Sean Reynolds, Austen King, Tarek Morad, Adam West (Enrique Montano 98’); Juan Guzman (capt.), Magnus Rasmussen, Niall McCabe (Kadeem Decres 65’); Ilija Ilic (Matt Fondy 65’), Nate Polak, Sidney Rivera
Louisville Bench: Greg Ranjitsingh (GK), Brian Burke, Charlie Adams, Aodhan Quinn