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By Admin, 06/28/11, 8:45AM EDT


Upset Columbus 2-1 in Round Three; Face Sporting Kansas City July 12


Tuesday, June 28, 2011 Columbus Crew Stadium
Columbus Crew      1 (Grossman 37’)
Richmond Kickers  2 (Hiroyama 20’, Delicate 85’)

COLUMBUS, OH – The Richmond Kickers ejected Major League Soccer’s Columbus Crew, 2-1, Tuesday night from the 2011 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup in the Third Round at Columbus Crew Stadium.  Midfielder Nozomi Hiroyama gave the visitors an early lead when he connected on a Stanley Nyazamba pass in the 20th minute.  Crew midfielder Cole Grossman brought the score level in the 37th minute before the Kickers prolific goal scorer Matthew Delicâte nodded home the game-winning goal five minutes from regulation.  The Kickers advance to the Quarterfinals for the fifth time in franchise history, and will face Sporting Kansas City at LIVESTRONG Sporting Park on Tuesday, July 12.

The Richmond Kickers made an early statement at Crew Stadium when Nyazamba played the ball to Hiroyama on the left side of the box.  Beating his defender to the inside, he curled the ball from 16 yards into the far upper 90, leaving goalkeeper Andy Gruenebaum with no options in the 20th minute. 

The Crew answered back five minutes later when Santiago Prim lined up a corner and served an inswinger into the box.  Defender Kevin Burns won the ball in the air, but his header ricocheted off the post and was cleared by the Kickers defense.

The MLS side was not to be denied again, when Justin Meram made a jagged run into the box and played a square ball to a wide open Grossman.  The rookie midfielder notched his first goal in a Columbus uniform when he calmly slotted the ball into the lower left corner from the top of the box.

Columbus was reduced to 10 men shortly after halftime when defender Danny O’Rourke retaliated after Ryan Heins drew a foul in the midfield.

With the match opening up, the Kickers nearly found the net in the 75th minute when Delicâte redirected a cross from the right side.  His determined header seemed destined for the back of the net but Gruenebaum was able to get his finger tips on the ball to push it against the post.

The striker and Gruenebaum met again 10 minutes later when Elcock delivered a cross from the right side to a well-positioned Delicâte.  The Kickers marksman threw himself horizontally to bury a diving header into the back of the net, against the goalkeeper’s run, to the far post.

In a last minute effort to find the equalizer, Columbus threw everything forward and nearly leveled the scoreline in the 89th minute.  Meram received the ball on the right wing and struck from 10 yards out, but his last gasp effort sailed skyward.

The Kickers claimed the U.S. Open Cup title the first year of the “Professional Era” in 1995 and have since made it to the quarterfinal round five times (1995, 2001, 2004, 2007, 2011), ousting four Major League Soccer teams along the way including Colorado Rapids in 2000, DC United in 2004, LA Galaxy in 2007 and Columbus Crew in 2011. 

The Richmond Kickers resume regular season action and conclude a three-game road stand this Friday, July 1 when they take on the Rochester Rhinos at Sahlen’s Stadium at 7:30 p.m.  The Kickers return to Richmond City Stadium on Monday, July 4 to host the Dayton Dutch Lions and the third annual Fourth of July Fest, presented by Northwestern Mutual.

Box Score      First Half     Second Half      Final
Columbus            1                      0                  0
Richmond            1                      1                  2 

Scoring Summary
20th minute: Richmond – Nozomi Hiroyama (Stanley Nyazamba)
37th minute: Columbus – Cole Grossman (Justin Meram)
85th minute: Richmond – Matthew Delicâte (Edson Elcock)

Crew: GK Andy Gruenebaum, Korey Veeder (Andy Iro 88’), Eric Gehrig, Kevin Burns, Danny O’Rourke, Santiago Prim (Tom Heinemann 59’), Cole Grossman, Dehan Rusmir, Robbie Rogers (Anor 87’), Justin Meram, Jeff Cunningham

Kickers: GK Ronnie Pascale, Sascha Görres, Henry Kalungi, William Yomby, Dave Hertel, Luke Vercollone, Jamel Wallace, Ryan Heins (David Bulow - 87’), Nozomi Hiroyama (Edson Elcock - 54’), Stanley Nyazamba (Shaka Bangura – 78’), Matthew Delicâte

Shots            Saves            Fouls               Corners
Kickers:  8     Kickers:   3     Kickers:  11     Kickers:   4  
Crew:   16     Crew:     1     Crew:      8      Crew:      8

35th minute: Dave Hertel (Richmond)
88th minute: David Bulow (Richmond)

67th minute: Danny O’Rourke (Columbus)

Referee:    Sorin Stoica
Assistant Referees:   John Safar, Britton Maier
Fourth Official:    Pierre Saintil Francillon
Attendance:    1,845
Weather:    Clear, 73¢