Orlando City advance to U.S. Open Cup quarterfinal with win over Columbus

Produced by Bryce Brimhall

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Bryce Brimhall / Valencia Voice

Carlos Rivas scored his fourth goal in U.S. Open Cup play when he blasted a 25-yard shot from outside the box in the 35th minute.

ORLANDO — Carlos Rivas continued to show he is finally finding his form as he scored his fourth U.S. Open Cup goal during Orlando City’s 2-0 win over the Columbus Crew at the Citrus Bowl on Tuesday.

Rivas made it a 2-0 game when he scored with a rocket of a shot that found the top right corner of the net in the 34th minute for his first non-penalty kick goal in an Orlando City uniform. Rivas had previously scored three penalty kick goals in the Lions fourth round U.S. Open Cup match against the Charleston Battery.

The 21-year-old Colombian has been seeing a lot more time on the training and that has translated to his play on the field and with Brek Shea set to miss at least a few games, meaning that Rivas will only continue to see consistent playing time over the next few weeks. Rivas’ confidence has been bursting through the seems over the past two games.

Kaka opened up the scoring for Orlando City when he tucked a shot away a shot into the back of the net in the 21st minute giving Orlando a 1-0 lead.

Tally Hall recorded his fourth clean sheet of the year and saved the only two shots on target that came his way helping Orlando City defeat the Crew for the first time as an MLS franchise.

“Everyone of the defenders individually has a lot of responsibility on this team,” said Hall following the game. “And it seems like every time they’re given a task they step up to the plate and they’re doing a very, very good job.”

The Lions defense allowed 13 shots but only two of them ended up on goal.

Orlando City head coach Adrian Heath started mostly first team players against Columbus, with Pedro Ribiero and Rivas being the only non regulars in the starting eleven.

Heath mentioned after the game that he only planned on playing Kaka for 70 minutes, but the midfielder didn’t want to come off and ended up playing 86 minutes before being subbed out for Harrison Heath.

With the win Orlando City now advances to the quarterfinals of the U.S. Open Cup where they will face the Chicago Fire on the road. This marks the second time in three years that Orlando has made it to the quarterfinals of the competition.

“Delighted to get through,” said Heath. “With any cup tie it’s win and advance, we’re pleased to do it against a very good team, very well coached team.

“I was really pleased with the way the players attitude and desire to win the game was because it was never easy at any stage.”

Orlando City will now return to league play on July 4 when they travel to Utah to take on Real Salt Lake. Kickoff is scheduled for 10 p.m. with the game being televised on Fox 35 in Orlando.

The Lions will be without Darwin Ceren for at least the next two MLS games as he, along with Cyle Larin will be playing for their respective national teams in the CONCACAF Gold Cup.

“We’re going to need everybody fit and well,” said Heath about the upcoming stretch of games. “Still a little bit concerned with the amount of players that we got that are waiting to come back.

“We don’t need to come off with anymore injuries, that’s the most important thing because the games are coming thick and fast again.”