May 28, 2012
Red Bulls have been ousted from the Open Cup twice by Charleston
This story originally was posted on July 20, 2004.
|Mike Magee missed a penalty kick in a loss to the Battery in 2004.
Linda Cuttone/Sports Vue Images
MetroStars forward Mike Magee missed a second-half penalty that could have tied the game in a 1-0 loss to the Charleston Battery in the U.S. Open Cup.
A year ago the MetroStars lost to one of their nemeses, the Chicago Fire, in the final of the Lamar Hunt/U.S. Open Cup.
This year they will be stunned and frustrated TV spectators after being eliminated by what has become another nasty nemesis, the lower division Charleston Battery, 1-0, in the fourth-round Open Cup encounter in Charleston, S.C.
For the second time in time in three years, the A-League Battery gave the Metros their walking papers from the American version of the English F.A. Cup. This time was just as embarrassing as the Metros are in first place in the MLS's Eastern Conference.
The Metros were eliminated by the Battery in a 4-1 loss in 2001. Paul Conway, who played the entire 90 minutes on Tuesday night, was the hero of that game, connecting twice.
On Tuesday, it was Steve Klein's turn to bask in the spotlight before a crowd of 2,200 at Blackbaud Stadium. Rick Titus took a free kick that was deflected by the Metros wall. Klein was then able to collect the loose ball, and slide it into the goal.
The victory certainly will give the struggling Battery (3-11-4) a much-needed boost to an otherwise underachieving and disappointing A-League season. The Battery will its meet A-League rival, the Rochester Raging Rhinos, in the quarterfinals on Aug. 4. The Rhinos eliminated the New England Revolution on Tuesday night, surviving a penalty-kick shootout, 3-1, after playing to a 1-1 draw after 120 minutes.
With one trophy out of their reach, the Metros must concentrate on just the league season. They return home to host the Fire at Giants Stadium at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday.
The Metros, Revs and Colorado Rapids are the only current MLS teams who have failed to win either the Open Cup or MLS Cup.
On Tuesday night, the Metros played without three injured regulars -- goalkeeper Jonny Walker (quadriceps strain), defender Craig Ziadie (knee) and playmaker and team leading scorer Amado Guevara (sprained left ankle).
There was little doubt the Metros missed the leadership of Guevara, who is one of the best players in MLS, and his ability to put away penalty kicks (he's four-for-four this season). The Metros missed a golden opportunity to equalize in the 73rd minute after they were awarded a penalty kick after Gabe Valencia took down Ed Gaven in the penalty area.
But forward Mike Magee knocked his attempt off the crossbar, the third time the Metros hit the woodwork in the match.
Besides taking spot kicks, the Metros sorely missed Guevara's passes in the midfield and the feeds that have sprung teammates for goals this season.
So, it shouldn't have been surprising the Battery had the better chances in a scoreless opening half, hitting the woodwork once and twice forcing keeper Zach Wells to make four saves.
Valencia had the first opportunity as his 12-yard shot hit the post in the 12th minute.
Magee returned the favor seven minutes later as his weak shot bounded off the post.
Wells was called on to deny Valencia twice in the opening half. His most memorable save came in the 27th minute as he dived to his left to stop the midfielder's attempt from the top of the penalty area.
Three minutes later, Wells was forced to make a near-post stop on forward Jesus Martinez's shot.
Metros defensive midfielder Kenny Arena needed to be taken off the field on a stretcher for an undetermined injury in the 53rd minute. He was replaced by Tenywa Bonseu.
John Wolyniec probably had the Metros' best opportunity when his 12-yard shot sailed over the crossbar in the 64th minute. Nine minutes later, second-half sub Fabian Taylor hit the post.
His team failing to create chances, Metros coach Bob Bradley decided to throw the dice late in the 77th minute, replacing rookie defender Seth Stammler with veteran striker Sergio Galvan Rey. It was too little and too late.
Due to the time to remove Arena from the field, six minutes of stoppage time was added. The Metros did not take advantage of the added time.
In what has to be one of the most confouding and embarrassing displays by an MLS side against a lower league team, the Metros were spanked by the Charleston Battery, 4-1, in a second-round encounter in Charleston, S.C. on June 26.
Gilbert Jean-Baptiste (47th minute), Paul Conway (70th minute), former Rutgers star Brian Piesner (77th minute) and Mac Cozier (79th minute) scored for the Battery (3-11-4) before a crowd of 4,097 at Blackbaud Stadium.
Daniel Hernandez's 90th-minute score spared the Metros a total embarrassment of being shutout by this struggling side.