Match Recap: Strikers 2, Heat 3
Photo credit- Rosa Cavalcanti
Match: Fort Lauderdale Strikers (FTL) v. Laredo Heat SC (LAR)
Competition: U.S. Open Cup Third Round
Venue: Lockhart Stadium; Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
Kickoff: 7:30 p.m. ET
Weather: 86 °F, cloudy
FTL- Gonzalo De Mujica (Carlos Salazar)- 8th minute
FTL- Yaikel Pérez (Carlos Salazar)- 12’
LAR- Irving Villanueva (Salvador Luna)- 27’
LAR- Orlando Alvarado (Orlando Bayona)- 86’
LAR- Orlando Bayona (penalty kick)- 90’+2
Fort Lauderdale Strikers (4-2-3-1) – 22-Lionel Brown; 5-Matt Hall (1-Oka Nikolov, 21), 33-Rafael Alves, 28-Ronaldo Vieira, 34-Darryl Gordon; 8-Pecka, 23-Manny Gonzalez; 21-Darnell King, 14-Carlos Salazar (17-Shawn Chin, 71), 7-Gonzalo De Mujica; 29-Yaikel Pérez (9-Martin Nuñez, 62)
Unused substitutes: 2-Stefan Antonijevic, 3-Mitchell Lopez, 15-Aly Alberto Hassan, 27-Colin Murphy
Laredo Heat SC (4-4-2) – 1-Jorge Ortega, 7- Salvador Luna, 19-Kaique Fernandes (20-Rafael Fereira, 75), 3-Alen Reina, 17-Francisco Lara; 28-Miguel Fernandez (24-Orlando Alvarado, 85), 27-Irving Villanueva, 11-Gergory Mulamba (C), 5-Angel Hernandez (23-Placide Buduri, 75); 9-Daniel Garca, 13-Orlando Bayona
Unused substitutes: 30-William Lukowski, 2-Matthieu Braem, 16-Kevin Hernandez, 25-Fazlo Alihodzic
FTL- Lionel Brown (ejection)- 20th minute
FTL- Pecka (caution)- 40’
LAR- Angel Hernandez (caution)- 47’
LAR- Placide Buduri (ejection)- 80’
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (Wednesday, May 28, 2014) -- The Fort Lauderdale Strikers were knocked out of the 101st edition of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup following a 3-2 defeat to Laredo Heat at Lockhart Stadium. Laredo scored the winning goal with the final kick of the match on a penalty kick.
The Strikers took an early 2-0 lead before goalkeeper Lionel Brown’s ejection in the 20th minute changed the dynamic of the match. Laredo completed a three-goal comeback and will face Major League Soccer side Houston Dynamo in the fourth round of the Cup.
Gonzalo De Mujica opened the scoring for the Strikers in just the eighth minute of the match with his first-ever professional goal. Carlos Salazar ended up with the ball on the top of the box following a quick counter attack and slipped De Mujica through on goal for the local product to finish a low effort through the goalkeeper’s legs.
Yaikel Perez doubled the Strikers’ lead just four minutes later with an unstoppable drive from the top of the box. Salazar again providing the assist as the hosts continued to dominate the early part of the match.
The turning point came in the 20th minute when the Strikers were reduced to 10 men. Brown handled the ball outside of the box and was shown a straight red card having denied Laredo a goalscoring opportunity. Oka Nikolov entered the match at the expense of Matt Hall.
It didn’t take long for Laredo to capitalize on their man advantage. Salvador Luna carved his way into the box and crossed to the back post for Irving Villanueva to head home for a goal in the 27th minute.
Laredo pressed for the equalizer but the Strikers held firm, and even went close to scoring. Manny Gonzalez rattled the crossbar with a 30-yard freekick in the 57th minute.
Time was running out for Laredo and their chances of a comeback looked slim when substitute Placide Buduri was sent off for a rash challenge on Ronaldo Vieira in the 80th minute with the score still 2-1.
The equalizer finally came in the 86th minute of the match. A minute after entering the match substitute Orlando Alvarado got on the end of a cross by Orlando Bayona and with his first touch of the game headed the Heat level at 2-2.
With the possibility of extra time looming, Laredo drew a penalty kick in injury time through Bayona. The forward stepped up to take the ensuing penalty kick and buried a high effort past Oka Nikolov to send Laredo into the fourth round of the Cup.
Coach Kronsteiner- "Obviously I’m very disappointed in the loss. It’s tough when you’re up 2-0 and you go down a man. It was the exact same situation as we were in last week (against Tampa Bay Rowdies). My congratulations to the Laredo Heat. They were down by two goals and they could have given up, but instead they kept fighting back."