USOC-PREVIEW

ORLANDO, Fla. (April 19, 2022) - Orlando City SC is set to host its neighbors to the west in the Tampa Bay Rowdies of the USL Championship in the Third Round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup.

Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. ET at Exploria Stadium with tickets available here. Wednesday’s match will be available to stream exclusively on ESPN+.

“We’re excited to play the first game [of this competition] versus a good team. It’s going to be a very good match,” Orlando City Assistant Coach Josema Bazán said ahead of Wednesday’s Third Round matchup. “The players are excited to play in the game in their first match of the Open Cup. We are all on the same page and we’ll continue to get ready.”

Wednesday’s match will see the Lions return to the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup for the first time since 2019, where they embarked on a record run in the nation’s oldest cup competition, making it to the Semifinal Round before falling to eventual champions Atlanta United FC.

City opens the competition against a familiar foe, with the midweek fixture set to reignite the I-4 Derby from the side’s USL Pro days. Through six matches from 2013-14, the Lions held a perfect 6-0-0 record against the Rowdies, last facing off in this very competition nearly eight years ago.

The Lions enter the midweek following a 2-0 shutout victory in Columbus on Saturday. Rodrigo Schlegel scored his first goal for the Club while Ercan Kara netted his second in as many contests. In net, Pedro Gallese tallied three saves to preserve the Lions’ fifth shutout of the 2022 campaign.

Kara now sits tied with Júnior Urso and Alexandre Pato for the team lead in goals scored, each with two on the year, while Facundo Torres leads the side in assists with four.

The Rowdies enter the Third Round of Open Cup play following a 6-0 victory over The Villages SC of USL League Two. Lucky Mkosana netted a hat trick in that competition to lead the USL Championship side to the next round. 

Following Wednesday’s match, the Lions will face off against the New York Red Bulls at Exploria Stadium on Sunday, April 24. Kickoff for that match is set for 3:30 p.m. ET, with tickets available here or by calling (855) ORL-CITY.