Thursday, July 02, 2015

Sporting Cruise into the USOC Quarterfinals

Behind a record setting performance by Dom Dwyer, Sporting KC cruised to a 6-2 win over FC Dallas in the 5th round of the US Open Cup. Sporting will now host the Houston Dynamo in the quarterfinals later this month with a chance to advance to their fourth US Open Cup semifinal in club history.
Sporting got things started off quickly when Dwyer scored his first goal of the night in just the fifth minute. Off a Benny Feilhaber corner kick Dwyer got himself space at the back post and was able to head it past Chris Seitz in the Dallas net to put KC up 1-0. KC continued the pressure and almost made it 2-0 shortly after, as a cross came into the box where Jacob Peterson met it, but Seitz had done a good job coming off his line and making himself big, blocking the shot. Dallas couldn't hold out forever though with only four regular starters, KC found the back of the net again in the 30th minute off another set piece. Feilhaber played the ball towards the back post, Seitz came for the ball, but Dwyer beat him to it heading it past him and into the net to put KC up 2-0. About 10 minutes later, he would get to make it 3-0. After being fouled just inside the box by Moises Hernandez for a shove as the KC forward was played into the box, Dwyer stepped up himself and buried the penalty to finish off his first half hattrick, the team's first hattrick since 2010. KC wasn't done in the first half either as Krisztian Nemeth got in on the action in first half stoppage time. After Feilhaber played in Peterson down the line, Peterson was able to get into the box and laid a nice ball off to Nemeth in the middle of the box for him to slot into the net as Seitz committed towards Peterson to make it 4-0 as the teams went in at the half.
The second half started on a sour note for KC though as Peterson picked up an injury after a tackle early on in the half. Peterson only made it to the 50th minute before the injury forced him to the sideline. His replacement though was involved in the fifth goal of the game though. In the 59th minute the ball came to Saad Abdul-Salaam at the top of the box, the rookie tried to hit the ball on goal, but miss hit it causing it to go towards the end line. Nemeth raced the ball down, settled it on the end line and then chipped the ball into the middle with the outside of his right foot. The ball floated over Seitz and curled into the net as Matt Hedges tried to make the save on the line, but only helped the ball into his own net as KC made it to five. Shortly after Dallas ruined the shutout as Michael Barrios and David Texeira worked a good give and go as Barrios beat Tim Melia to make it 5-1 in the 61nd minute. KC though responded with another goal of their own. After a foul at the top of the box, Dwyer stepped up and curled the ball over the wall and into the net to score his fourth goal of the night; the first KC player to ever score four in a game and KC was up 6-1. A few minutes later, Dallas was able to get one more consolation goal as a shot by Kellyn Acosta deflected off of Matt Besler and past Melia into the net to make it 6-2. KC killed most of the rest of the game with possession through their midfield and defense as they cruised into a bye weekend and into the quarterfinals.
Wizards Man of the Match - Dom Dwyer - Hard to argue when a guy goes and scores four goals in a game. Dwyer looked on top of his game last night and hopefully it's a sign that he's rounding into form. His four goals and Nemeth's two give both of them nine of the season, the more balanced attack should serve KC very well going forward if the two can continue to play well together.
Honorable Mention - Krisztian Nemeth, Benny Feilhaber
Player Ratings - Melia 6, Anibaba 6, Ellis 7, Besler 6, Dia 6, Mustivar 7, Espinoza 7, Feilhaber 8, Nemeth 8, Dwyer 10, Peterson 8. Subs Abdul-Salaam 6, Nagamura 6, Hallisey 6.

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