City Islanders advance, Reading & Phoenix out of USOC

Three area teams featured in Tuesday night’s the first round of the 2011 US Open Cup. In Harrisburg, the USL PRO side City Islanders were host to fellow Philadelphia Union affiliate Reading United of the PDL. USASA amateur side Phoenix SC traveled to Rochester to face USL PRO side Rochester Rhinos.

Harrisburg will advance to the second round.

Harrisburg City Islanders 2–1 Reading United

Reading United held a 1–0 lead thanks to a goal from David Rodriguez in the 35th minute. Despite Reading going down to 10 men in the 53rd minute after Stephen Okai was given a straight red for a challenge on Harrisburg defender Stephen Basso, it wasn’t until the 86th minute that JT Noone equalized off of an assist from Jason Hotchkin. Sainey Touray scored the winner for the City Islanders in stoppage time.

It was a physical match between the Union affiliates with 31 fouls being called. Six cards were handed out—four of them to Reading—all but one of the cards coming in the second half.

Noone’s goal was his fifth in US Open Cup play. Over the past five years, Harrisburg has a perfect record in first round play and the team has a perfect record against amateur clubs (6–0–0 against amateur clubs, 4–0–0 against PDL clubs.)

Rochester Rhinos 2–1 Phoenix SC

A goal from Phoenix SC’s Scott Rowling in the 71st minute halved Rochester’s lead, but the amateur side was unable to score again.

Rochester’s JC Banks scored in the 27th minute to give the home team an early lead. Just after the half Rochester won a penalty kick when Max Ferdinand—who had assisted the Banks goal— was fouled by Phoenix goalkeeper Tony Praticio. Anthony Hamilton converted to make it 2–0.

Phoenix turned on the pressure after Rowling’s goal in the 71st minute, nearly equalizing ten minutes later.

In the closing minutes of the match, Praticio stopped a shot from Hamilton, the rebound banging off of the crossbar.

Harrisburg City Islanders v Rochester Rhinos, July 21

Harrisburg will host USL PRO  rivals Rochester at Skyline Sports Complex on Tuesday, June 21. Kickoff is at 7pm. The winner of that game will advance to the Third Round to face a to be determined club from MLS.

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