FC Cincinnati falls to Tampa Bay in US Open Cup

FC Cincinnati falls to Tampa Bay in US Open Cup
Posted at 11:54 PM, Jun 01, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-02 00:19:33-04

FC Cincinnati's run in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup ended Wednesday night in a 1-0 loss to the Tampa Bay Rowdies at Al Lang Stadium in St. Petersburg, Florida.

FCC had an early chance to score from Kenney Walker, whose attempt was stopped by Rowdies keeper Matt Pickens. Later in the first half, Walker took a low shot from 35-yards out that was just pushed out by Pickens, resulting in an FCC corner kick.

Rowdies striker Georgi Hristov scored the lone goal of the game in the 11th minute.

FCC midfielder Ross Tomaselli took a dangerous shot later in the first period but hooked it just wide.

In the second half, Corben Bone took a long pass from Walker but couldn't get past Pickens.

Late in the match, Sean Okoli was inches away from knotting the score on an FCC set piece in stoppage time, but his attempt found the outside edge of the goal post.

FCC had advanced in the tournament after a 2-1 win two weeks ago over the fourth-tier Indy Eleven NPSL team at Nippert Stadium.

Wednesday night's loss ends FCC's seven-match undefeated streak.

Dating back to 1914, the U.S. Open Cup is the oldest cup competition in United States soccer and is among the oldest in the world. It is a single-elimination, 90-game tournament hosted by the U.S. Soccer Federation and open to all soccer teams of any division in the United States.

All Major League Soccer, North American Soccer League and USL teams not affiliated with MLS automatically qualify, while fourth- and fifth-tier teams from the NPSL and Player Development League had their own qualifying tournament in the fall.

It is a completely standalone competition with no impact on the USL season, despite running concurrently with it.

FC Cincinnati faces the Richmond Kickers at 7 p.m. Saturday at Nippert Stadium, with a USL six-game undefeated stretch on the line.

--- freelance reporter Laurel Pfahler contributed to this report.