Terrible first half kills Open Cup campaign, 5:3
May 20, 2009 (Official Game Summary)

5:3
DC United New York
Pontius 2
Khumalo
Barklage
Fred
Richards
Rojas 2
05.20.09 · Open Cup

A four-goal first half helped D.C. United defeat the New York Red Bulls, 5-3, at RFK Stadium Wednesday night in a Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Play-In Game. The Red Bulls were eliminated from the tournament.

D.C. United pressed from the get-go and had its first chance six minutes in when Chris Pontius was put in on goal on a ball by Thabiso Khumalo. Pontius raced in before crossing it to Fred, who put his one-time shot over the bar. Moments later however, Pontius put the hosts in front. After United earned its first corner of the match, Christian Gomez's delivery was headed by Pontius past goalkeeper Danny Cepero and into the back of the net.

United doubled their lead in the 18th minute. Gomez played a through ball in the path of Khumalo and he went in alone on Cepero. Khumalo circled Cepero and hit a shot that a fully extended Jeremy Hall could only slide into his own net. Three minutes later, United went up 3-0 when Ange N'Silu's cross from the left wing was deflected by Cepero into Brandon Barklage's path and he blasted it into the empty net.

D.C. made it four in the 26th minute. Pontius played a long cross-field ball to Fred, who beat his defender. Fred's initial shot was blocked by Cepero but he picked up his own rebound and knocked it in.

The Red Bulls had a good chance to score after United's third goal, as Wolyniec had space in the box and hit a shot that was poked away by goalkeeper Josh Wicks. Red Bulls midfielder Khano Smith tested Wicks again in the 43rd minute with a right-footed shot that was parried away.

New York put their name on the scoreboard one minute later. Wolyniec played an over-the-top ball to an on-rushing Dane Richards and he shrugged off his defender before slamming it past Wicks.

The visitors made three substitutions at halftime and it immediately paid dividends three minutes into the second half. Wolyniec found himself with his back towards goal by the penalty spot and he laid it off to substitute Jorge Rojas, who one-timed it inside the left post to make it 4-2. However, United extended its lead back to three as Fred found Pontius with a cross in the box and Pontius headed it past Cepero, who came off his line to deal with the pass.

In this back and forth affair, New York made it 5-3 when it earned a penalty kick in the 58th minute after a Danleigh Borman cross hit off the arm of United defender Greg Janicki. Rojas stepped up and sent Wicks the wrong way for his second goal of the game.

New York had other chances to make the scoreline closer, with Janicki almost deflecting a Wolyniec cross in his own net in the 74th minute and midfielder Luke Sassano hitting just high with Wicks off his line a minute later.

Lineup: Cepero, Borman, Boyens, Mendes, Hall, Pietravallo, Sassano, Smith, Richards, Oduro, Wolyniec. Subs: Zimmerman, Goldthwaite, Rojas, Ubiparipovic.

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