Twenty-one USL teams took part in the second round of USOC over the last two days. Sixteen of them survived against lower-division clubs to advance to the third round, where NASL teams will enter the competition. It wasn’t a bad round for USL, but the fan bases of 5 teams might be left scratching their heads.
Wilmington Hammerheads FC lost after PKs to Chattanooga FC. This result isn’t entirely surprising because Chattanooga has upended Wilmington in the Cup before, and the Hammerheads on are a poor run of form. Surprising or not, this is a bitter pill for Wilmington supporters.
While on the topic of bitterness and supporters, lets turn our attention to Chula Vista’s 3-0 dismantling of Arizona United SC. United stock has been falling since opening the USL season with 3 consecutive road wins. Some fans in AZ are beginning to call for the dismissal of Coach Dello.
New York Red Bulls II dropped a 1-0 decision to New Jersey Express. This one is not a complete shocker. I’d have to verify, but I’d bet the Express roster is as aged and experienced as the youthful NYRBII squad.
The PSA Elite 2-1 win against Orange County Blues FC would not have turned heads in any other year. This year, though, the Blues are among the top teams in the USL Western Conference, and the early departure from the Cup is a disappointment.
Finally, Ventura County Fusion beat LA Galaxy II by a score of 2-1 at Stubhub. A heartbreaking goal late in stoppage time provided Los Dos with an early exit from the tournament.