Highmark Stadium held its first Open Cup game and did not hold back on the dramatics. The Pittsburgh Riverhounds defeated RWB Adria in a game that needed more than regulation.
Adria notched an early lead, with a goal from Carlos Munoz, slipping through the Riverhounds defense and catching them off guard to go up 1-0 in the 17th minute. The goals for the first half really don’t say much, with Pittsburgh leading in shots (5) and corners (4).
Pittsburgh took an equalizer in the second half. Seth C’deBaca scored from the top of the 18-yard box that started from a Rob Vincent corner in the 53rd minute. After a redirect and an assist from Mike Green, C’deBaca notched it in, his first of the season. “It’s something I’ve needed,” he said after the game.
The rest of regulation was very back and forth, where fatigue started to settle in for both sides, which led to a few injury stoppages and cautions from the referee. All yellow cards came in the second half and beyond, with Adria 4 to Pittsburgh’s 3, all of which were labeled as “unnessecary behavior.”
Extra time is where the Riverhounds almost took the victory. They registered five shots in the overtime periods, with three of them coming from forward Jose Angulo. It was also some impressive goalkeeping from Adria’s Igor Dimov that kept the Chicago-based side in the tail end of the game.
With penalties on tap, Riverhounds goalkeeper Greg Blum hadn’t had any professional experience, with his last being in his college days at Slippery Rock University. Unfortunately for Blum, his debut in net for a PK shootout was nothing impressive, as all of Adria’s shots went in, including a lucky crossbar bounce from Adnan Ejupovic’s shot. The crossbar wasn’t very kind to Johnny Morris for the next Adria penalty, as it hit the crossbar and bounced off, away from the goal.
It was Matthew Dallman that put Pittsburgh ahead and Kevin Kerr to clinch the victory for Pittsburgh, 5-4 on penalties.
“The win doesn’t feel as good as I thought it was going to feel,” said Pittsburgh coach Justin Evans after the game. “We still have a few things to look at.”
1,400 people saw Pittsburgh move to four games unbeaten, the last two being victories at home. RIverhounds are currently 10th in the USL PRO table, with a 1-4-3 record. Riverhounds move on to play the Ocean City Nor’easters in the second round.
SHOTS: Pittsburgh:17, RWB Adria: 4
SAVES: Pittsburgh: 2, RWB Adria: 6
CORNERS: Pittsburgh: 15, RWB Adria: 2
FOULS: Pittsburgh: 19, RWB Adria: 19
OFFSIDES: Pittsburgh: 3, RWB Adria: 6