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RECAP: Sounders secure Open Cup win over Louisville City in epic PK showdown

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The Seattle Sounders defeated the USL Championship’s Louisville City FC 5-4 on penalty kicks after a 2-2 draw in regulation on Wednesday in the Round of the 16 of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup at Starfire Stadium in Tukwila, Wash. Paul Rothrock and Danny Musovski paced Seattle to a 2-0 lead before Sean Totsch and Jorge Gonzalez brought Louisville City level late.

Josh Atencio had a decent look in the 23rd minute when broke through and unleashed a shot on a counterattack from the top of the box, but he skied his effort.

It was a rather quiet open half defensively for the Sounders, as Wilson Harris’ left-footed shot in the 28th minute forced Andrew Thomas into his only save of the first half.

Adrien Perez had Louisville’s best chance of the first half in the 40th minute when he cut to his right in the right side of the box and fired a shot that Jonathan Bell deflected and ricocheted off the near post.

The Sounders found the opener a minute later when Dylan Teves led a counterattack and played in Georgi Minoungou on the right. The Ivorian sent a first-timed cross to the far post to find Rothrock, who connected on a half-volley that beat Daniel Faundez in goal.

The Sounders doubled their lead in the 63rd minute when Danny Leyva’s free kick picked out Musovski, who deftly redirected in a header at the back post.

Louisville City halved the deficit in the 67th minute when Totsch converted from the penalty spot after Alex Roldan was whistled for a handball in the box.

Gonzalez leveled the match in the 89th minute when he cleaned up a scramble in the box off a long throw-in.

Minoungou immediately had a chance to regain the lead in the first minute of stoppage time after Roldan drove to the right end line and picked out Minoungou, but his shot went over the crossbar.

After heading to 30 minutes of extra time, Thomas made a great save in the 95th minute when he got down to his right to deny Jansen Wilson at the near post.

Neither side could find separation and the match went to penalty kicks.

Totsch stepped up first for Louisville and saw his shot ring off the crossbar before Faundez saved Musovski’s first attempt for the Sounders.

Thomas then made a huge save in the second round before Leyva opened the scoring for Seattle.

Louisville pulled even in the fourth round when Faundez denied Léo Chú’s attempt, effectively sending the shootout to sudden death.

After Louisville and Seattle scored in the fifth round, Thomas and Faundez each made respective saves in the sixth round to extend the shootout.

Thomas made another save in the eighth round before stepping up himself to shoot in the bottom half of the round. The Sounders goalkeeper calmly stepped up and fired in the winner.

The Sounders will have a short turnaround when they travel to Providence Park on Sunday to take on the rival Portland Timbers (1:45 p.m. PT; FOX, Watch on Apple TV).

THREE TAKEAWAYS

Rothrock Open Cup magic

Rothrock has logged just 26 minutes across four matches in MLS so far this season, but he loves the Open Cup. The Seattle native scored in his third consecutive Open Cup match dating back to goals last year against San Diego Loyal and the LA Galaxy. 

Youth influence

Head Coach Brian Schmetzer went with a heavily rotated side on Wednesday, leaning on youth from both the First Team and Tacoma Defiance. Rothrock, Teves, Stuart Hawkins and Minoungou paved the way, while Kalani Kossa-Rienzi, Snyder Brunell, Antino Lopez and Osaze De Rosario made their First Team debuts.

Phoenix Rising awaits

The Sounders will take on another USL Championship side in Phoenix Rising FC, who defeated North Carolina FC, in the Open Cup Round of 16. Seattle will host Phoenix on either Tuesday, May 21, or Wednesday, May 22.

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