Short-Handed Thunder Battle but Bow Out to Burn, 2-0
BLAINE, Minn. (Tuesday, July 25, 2000) - Forced to play one man short for three-fourths of Tuesday's Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup third-round match against the Dallas Burn of Major League Soccer (MLS), the defending A-League champion Minnesota Thunder battled gamely before bowing out of the tournament 2-0 in front of 3,110 at Blaine's National Sports Center.
Dallas advanced to the Aug. 9 Open Cup quarterfinals against the MLS' Chicago Fire, who eliminated the amateur Chicago Sockers of the Premier Development League 1-0 Tuesday in Arlington Heights, Ill.
Thunder midfielder Morgan Zeba was ejected in the 23rd minute after using his cleats to open a gash above Dallas midfielder Paul Broome's left knee that required 22 stitches. The Burn capitalized on their one-man advantage with goals by forward Jason Kreis in the 36th minute and midfielder Lazo Alavanja in the 88th.
"I would have liked to play them with a full hand," said Thunder coach Buzz Lagos. "I thought we still had a chance to do it after we went down a man, and we almost did do it. But it just wasn't meant to be."
Minnesota forward Gerard Lagos, playing alone up front as the Thunder employed a defensive-minded 4-5-1 formation, had a 10-yard header fly over the crossbar in the 34th minute and had an 8-yard header go wide left in the 51st. Defender John Coughlin's header from midfielder Nate Winkel's corner kick flashed past the right post in the 69th minute.
U.S. national team players Chad Deering and Kreis, both of whom saw action in Sunday's 2-1 World Cup 2002 qualifying loss at Costa Rica, combined for what stood up as the game-winning goal. After Deering nudged midfielder Oscar Pareja's crossing pass away from two defenders, Kreis chased it down outside the right corner of the 6-yard box and drove a low shot just inside the left post.
Lightning forced a 75-minute rain delay in the 78th minute, and Minnesota wasn't able to mount much of an attack after the break. Alavanja iced the victory for Dallas by poking an 8-yard shot into the lower right corner after Antonio Martinez, Broome's replacement, sent a pass through the middle from the left baseline.
Dallas goalkeeper Matt Jordan made three saves to earn the shutout. Thunder goalkeeper John Swallen finished with six saves, one of which was a diving stop on forward Bobby Rhine's 10-yard shot in the 49th minute.
Minnesota fell to 1-5 against MLS teams after losing its first non-exhibition game against a top-level club. Dallas improved to 10-3 all-time and 6-0 against A-League teams in Open Cup play.
2000 LAMAR HUNT U.S. OPEN CUP MATCH REPORT
|Participants:||Minnesota Thunder (A-League) vs. Dallas Burn (MLS)|
|Competition:||2000 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Third Round|
|Venue:||National Sports Center (Blaine, Minn.)|
|Date:||July 25, 2000|
|Weather:||Stormy - Match suspended for 75 minutes in second half due to lightning|
Burn - Kreis, (Deering), 36,
Burn - Alavanja, (Martinez), 88.
BURN - Matt Jordan, Jorge Rodriguez, Eric Dade, Ricardo Iribarren (Richard Farrer, 46), Mark Santel, Oscar Pareja, Lazo Alavanja, Paul Broome (Antonio Martinez, 29), Chad Deering, Jason Kreis, Bobby Rhine (Ted Eck, 73).
THUNDER - John Swallen, Brian Winters, Eric Otto, Mike Gentile, Morgan Zeba, John Coughlin, Stoian Mladenov (Nate Winkel, 67), John Sylvester (Paul Schneider, 76), Aaron Leventhal, Don Gramenz, Gerard Lagos (John Menyongar, 63).
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