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1999 U.S. Open Cup Quarterfinals Begin Wednesday


CHICAGO (Tuesday, August 10, 1999) - With the #13 Charleston Battery's thrilling 4-3 overtime upset of #3 D.C. United in the final match of the third round last week, it appears that the 1999 U.S. Open Cup could mark the "Year of the A-League" as the annual tournament enters the quarterfinal round tomorrow night. The A-League has produced three of the eight quarterfinalists, guaranteeing that at least one team from the Division II league will advance to the semifinals, which will be played at the Virginia Beach SportsPlex at a date to be determined. The four quarterfinal matches will take place over the next week (Aug. 11-18), with two matches tomorrow night and another on Friday.

The other two A-League quarterfinalists, the #9 Rochester Raging Rhinos and #11 Staten Island Vipers, will be looking to further their role of the spoiler in this year's tournament after they also upset their MLS counterparts in the third round. The #9-ranked Rhinos, the defending A-League champs, pulled out a surprising 1-0 win over the Chicago Fire, the reigning U.S. Open Cup and MLS Cup holders, in front of 10,107 fans at Frontier Field in Rochester, N.Y. One night earlier and across the state, the #11-ranked Staten Island Vipers stole a 3-2 overtime victory from the ailing MetroStars.

The Rhinos will host the #5-ranked and '97 Open Cup champion Dallas Burn on Wednesday, August 11 at Frontier Field in Rochester, N.Y., arguably one of the most difficult soccer stadiums to play in as a visiting team. The Vipers will travel to Charleston to play at the Battery's Blackbaud Stadium next Wednesday, August 18. The three teams will be looking to be the first A-League team to earn a semi-final spot since 1996, when the Rhinos advanced all the way to the Open Cup final, where they lost to D.C. United, 3-0.

MLS, which has dominated the final stages of the Open Cup in the three previous years and has produced the last three champions, will host the other two matches. The #1 Colorado Rapids, who lead the Western Conference with a 12-5 record, will travel to face the #6 Tampa Bay Mutiny on Friday, August 13 at Raymond James Stadium. In the other all-MLS quarterfinal, the #4-ranked and '98 Open Cup runner-up Columbus Crew will head west to take on the rejuvenated #7 Los Angeles Galaxy on Wednesday, August 11 at Cal-State Fullerton's Titan Field.

The Virginia Beach SportsPlex was named the site of the semifinals after missing out on hosting last year's final when the nasty Hurricane Bonnie forced the Open Cup final inland to Chicago's Soldier Field. The 12,000-seat stadium, which hosts the A-League's Hampton Roads Mariners, was completed in 1998 and stands as one of the first stadiums in the country that was built specifically for soccer.

Another is the newly-constructed Columbus Crew Stadium, where the 1999 U.S. Open Cup Final will be played on Tuesday, September 14 and televised live at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN for the first time in the tournament's history. For ticket information, contact the Columbus Crew at 614/447-CREW.

U.S. OPEN CUP FIRST ROUND RESULTS
DateMatch-upsResult
June 5Los Lobos (USASA III) at Wilmington Hammerheads(D3)8-1, Wilmington
June 8Austin Lone Stars (D3) at Mid-Michigan Bucks (PDL)3-2, Mid-Michigan
June 9New York Freedom (PDL) at Cape Cod Crusaders (D3)3-1, New York
June 9United German Hungarians (USASA I) at New Jersey Stallions(D3)2-1, UG Hungarians
June 10Cocoa Expos (PDL) at N. Virginia Royals (D3)5-3, Cocoa
June 11Mexico SC (USASA IV) at Arizona Sahuaros (D3)3-2 OT, Arizona
June 16Spokane Shadow (PDL) at Chico Rooks (D3)3-2 OT, Spokane
June 20Bavarian Leinenkugel (USASA II) at Carolina Dynamo (D3)1-0, Carolina

U.S. OPEN CUP SECOND ROUND RESULTS
DateMatch-upsResult
June 23#29 United German Hungarians (USASA 1) at #11 Staten Island Vipers (A-League)7-0, Staten Island
June 23#25 Mid Michigan Bucks (PDL) at #12 Minnesota Thunder (A-League)2-1, Mid Michigan
June 23#28 Spokane Shadow (PDL) at #14 Seattle Sounders (A-League)3-1, Seattle
June 30#26 New York Freedom (PDL) at #9 Rochester Rhinos (A-League)2-1, (OT) Rochester
June 30#19 Arizona Sahuaros (D3 Pro) at #10 San Diego Flash (A-League)9-2, San Diego
July 5#24 Carolina Dynamo (D3 Pro) at #15 Orange County Zodiac (A-League)2-0, Carolina
July 6#17 Wilmington Hammerheads (D3 Pro) at #13 Charleston Battery (A-League)2-1, Charleston
July 10#27 Cocoa Expos (PDL) at #16 Jacksonville Cyclones (A-League)7-2, Jacksonville

U.S. OPEN CUP THIRD ROUND RESULTS
DateMatch-upsResult
July 12#6 Tampa Bay Mutiny (MLS) at #25 Mid Michigan Bucks (PDL)2-1, Tampa Bay
July 13#11 Staten Island Vipers (A-League) at #8 NY/NJ MetroStars (MLS)3-2 OT, Staten Island
July 13#24 Carolina Dynamo (D3 Pro) at #4 Columbus Crew (MLS)3-0, Columbus
July 13#16 Jacksonville Cyclones (A-League) at #5 Dallas Burn (MLS)3-0, Dallas
July 14#14 Seattle Sounders (A-League) at #1 Colorado Rapids (MLS)1-0, Colorado
July 14#2 Chicago Fire (MLS) at #9 Rochester Rhinos (A-League)1-0, Rochester
July 20#7 Los Angeles Galaxy (MLS) at #10 San Diego Flash (A-League)3-2, Los Angeles
Aug. 4#3 D.C. United (MLS) at # 13 Charleston Battery (A-League)4-3 OT, Charleston

QUARTERFINAL PAIRINGS
DateThe Match-UpsKickoff
Aug. 11#4 Columbus Crew (MLS) at #7 Los Angeles Galaxy (MLS)7:30 p.m. PT
Aug. 11#5 Dallas Burn (MLS) at #9 Rochester Rhinos (A-League)7:35 p.m. ET
Aug. 13#1 Colorado Rapids (MLS) at #6 Tampa Bay Mutiny (MLS)7:30 p.m. ET
Aug. 18#11 Staten Island Vipers (A-League) at #13 Charleston Battery (A-League)7:30 p.m. ET

Rankings based on team's divisional standing as of June 1, 1999 ... Team rankings do not affect team pairings or home-field advantage, but are listed to serve the media and fans in comparing team strengths ... League affiliation listed in parenthesis.

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