The US Open Cup tournament is soccer at it's finest in the United States as it features a whole bunch of teams that you (probably) have not heard of taking on a whole mess of teams that you have (most likely) heard of. It is a shot at glory (and a CONCACAF Champions League spot) for one team and it does not get any better than seeing the little guys knock off the big guy.
Last night was the second round of the Open Cup and it featured three of the teams that we usually cover here at the Wave and for two of them, it was a very happy night indeed.
Charlotte Eagles (PDL) 0:2 Charlotte Independence (USL)
The Independence were able to knock off their cross-town rivals with goals from Christopher Hellman and Jorge Herrera to seal a place in the third round against NASL side Carolina RailHawks on June 1 in Cary, NC. The match featured a few Colorado Rapids players on loan, including the debut of goalkeeper John Berner. Emmanuel Appiah and Caleb Calvert also featured in this Charlotte Derby.
Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC (USL) 1:0 Harpo's FC (USSSA)
This was a rematch from the 2015 Open Cup which saw the Switchbacks knock off Harpo's 2-1, and while the score was different, the result was the same. Marty Maybin of the Switchbacks scored in the 13th minute (with an assist to former Rapids defender Davy Armstrong) and that would be all that Colorado Springs would need to grab a spot in the third round. With the victory the Switchbacks advance to take on Arizona United SC (USL) on June 1 in Peoria, Arizona.
Major League Soccer sides enter the tournament on June 15 and we should know soon whether the Rapids will be hosting or will travel for that one.