CHICAGO (Thursday, June 13, 2002) – U.S. Soccer announced today the Second and Third Round tournament pairings for the 2002 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup. Four amateur clubs (three PDL, one USASA) and four D3 Pro League teams will take on eight A-League squads in the Second Round that will run from June 25-26, with the winners advancing to meet eight Major League Soccer (MLS) teams in the Third Round slated for July 17.
The 89-year-old tournament continues when the Second Round begins with one encounter on Tuesday, June 25, as the A-League’s Seattle Sounders travel to Salt Lake City to face D3’s Utah Blitzz at Cottonwood High School.
The Second Round concludes the next day (June 26) with seven match-ups as the A-League’s Minnesota Thunder starts off “Elimination Wednesday” as they host the U.S. Amateur Soccer Association’s Region IV representative Mexico S.C. of Fresno, Calif., at the National Sports Center in Blaine, Minn.
The 1995 U.S. Open Cup winner Richmond Kickers (A-League) enter the 2002 competition in the Second Round on June 26, and will travel to meet the Raleigh CASL Elite from the Premier Development League (PDL) at the SAS Stadium in Cary, N.C., while another former champion (1999) Rochester Raging Rhinos (A-League) host the Des Moines Menace (PDL) at Frontier Field in Rochester, N.Y.
Formerly known as the N.Y. Pancyprian Freedoms, the New York Freedoms (D3) – the last team to win back-to-back Open Cup titles in 1982-83 – visit the Milwaukee Rampage Sports Complex in Franklin, Wisc., to take on the host Milwaukee Rampage (A-League) on June 26, while the South Jersey Barons (D3) welcome the Hampton Road Mariners (A-League).
Rounding out “Elimination Wednesday” are the Greenville Lions (D3) greeting the Charleston Battery (A-League) at Sirrine Stadium in Greenville, S.C., and the Memphis Express (PDL) traveling to Clarkston, Ga., to meet the Atlanta Silverbacks at DeKalb Memorial Stadium.
The Third Round kicks off with the eight Second Round survivors facing eight MLS teams – Chicago Fire, Colorado Rapids, Columbus Crew, Dallas Burn, Kansas City Wizards, Los Angeles Galaxy, NY/NJ MetroStars and San Jose Earthquakes – on July 17.
U.S. Soccer placed the MLS squads into the Third Round brackets and have confirmed the following fixtures for July 17: the Columbus Crew will host the winner of the Raleigh-Richmond match, while the Colorado Rapids, Dallas Burn, Kansas City Wizards and NY/NJ MetroStars will be on the road for their respective Third Round games. The Rapids take on the winner of the Greenville-Charleston encounter, the Burn meets the victor of the Memphis-Atlanta game, the Wizards will travel to either Des Moines or Rochester, and the MetroStars battle the Hampton Roads-South Jersey winner.
The remaining Third Round fixtures for MLS teams will be determined pending the results from the Second Round as follows:
The San Jose Earthquakes will either host Seattle or visit Utah; defending Open Cup champion Los Angeles Galaxy will either travel to face Minnesota or play Mexico S.C. at a site to be determined; and the Chicago Fire will either greet the N.Y. Freedoms or head north to take on Milwaukee.
U.S. Soccer also determined the respective home teams for the 2002 quarterfinals via a lottery conducted earlier in the day.
The winners from the following Third Round regional brackets will host quarterfinal matches on August 7:
- NY/NJ MetroStars vs. South Jersey/Hampton Roads
- Chicago Fire vs. Milwaukee/N.Y. Freedoms
- Dallas Burn vs. Memphis/Atlanta
- San Jose Earthquakes vs. Utah/Seattle
Played under FIFA rules, each Open Cup match will finish with a winner, with games tied after regulation time going into 30 minutes of sudden-death overtime and then to penalty kicks, if needed.
Fox Sports World and Fox Sports World Español, which have broadcast a number of Open Cup matches across the last two years - including the semifinals and championship games - will once again be the official television broadcaster of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup in 2002. The exact broadcast schedule for this year’s tournament will be announced at a later date.
Dating back to 1914, the 89-year-old U.S. Open Cup is the oldest soccer cup competition in the United States and is among the oldest in the world.