Kickers dominate Jacksonville Armada 3-0 to move on in U.S. Open Cup

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — From start to finish the Richmond Kickers of the United Soccer League outclassed Jacksonville Armada FC of the North American Soccer League, winning 3-0 in U.S. Open Cup play.

The Kickers got first half goals from Deep Run /UVA product Brian Ownby as well as Jason Yeisley before George Davis IV added a penalty kick goal in the second half.

The following comes directly from the Richmond Kickers:

RICHMOND, VA – The Richmond Kickers became the first club in the history of the U.S. Open Cup Pro Era to score 100 goals when Jason Yeisley buried a goal between Brian Ownby and George Davis IV tallies to give the home side a 3-0 victory against the Jacksonville Armada in the tournament’s Third Round Wednesday night. The historic victory earned the Kickers a home match against the Columbus Crew of Major League Soccer in a Fourth Round clash at City Stadium on Wednesday, June 17.

Responding quickly to Jacksonville’s early attack, Kickers midfielder Fred Owusu Sekyere, intercepted the ball in the midfield, turned his defender and lofted a leading ball to Ownby. Breaking through the defense, he raced towards the box but was thwarted by Aramda defender Lucas Trejo whose last-gasp goal line clearance kept the match scoreless in the 8th minute. Midfielder Yudai Imura teed up the resulting corner kick, connecting with defender William Yomby who rose above the pack but nodded the ball just over the crossbar.

The shift in momentum led to the opening goal 10 minutes later when the Kickers were awarded a second corner. Owusu served an inswinging ball into a swarming box, finding Ownby though the fray who made no mistake from point blank range to give the home side a narrow advantage.

Later, Owusu came up with the ball again deep in Kickers territory and served it through the midfield to Samuel Asante. Dancing around defenders, he played a looping long ball across to Ownby streaking down the left flank. He sliced a cross to the penalty spot searching for Yeisley, but was denied by a well-positioned Miguel Gallardo who latched onto the airborne ball.

Yeisley was not to be denied a second time, capping off the first half with a second tally just before the break. Recovering a loose ball in the midfield, he was challenged by Trejo who deflected the ball only to watch idly as Yeisley collected the rebound and raced unmarked to the top of the box. With only the keeper to beat, he settled his shot and buried the ball in the far upper 90.

Jacksonville saw their first shot of the night minutes after the restart when they earned a free kick 30 yards out. Pascal Millien centered the ball for forward Areil Barrett but his distance strike glanced just wide.

The Kickers, however, picked up where they left off minutes later when Owusu served a free kick wide to Alex Lee on the right wing. The Kickers defender worked to the endline and whipped a cross to the back post but before it could reach its intended target, Hugh Roberts drew a foul inside the box. George Davis IV stepped up to the penalty spot and calmly tucked it into the right corner to extend the Kickers lead.

Jacksonville squandered their best chance of the night with less than 10 minutes remaining in regulation when defender Joseph Toby beat Davis down the line and swung a cross to the penalty spot. A well-positioned Barrett one-timed a shot that rattled the upright and fell to a lurking Jaime Castrillan at the back post but his follow up shot was rejected by a swooping Ryan Taylor to hand the Kickers a shutout and a berth to the U.S. Open Cup Fourth Round.

The Richmond Kickers return to regular season action this Saturday, May 30 when they host the New York Red Bulls II at City Stadium. Kickoff is slated for at 7:00 p.m.

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