Rapids Battle Thunder in US Open Cup Match on Wednesday Night

The Colorado Rapids will enter the oldest sporting tournament in America the 2005 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup with a fourth round match on Wednesday August 3rd when they take on the Minnesota Thunder from the United Soccer League’s First Division at the James Griffin Stadium in St. Paul Minnesota at 6:00 p.m. (MT).


CLICK HERE TO LISTEN TO THE GAME LIVE *Kick off 6:00 p.m. MT*
**Link will be available minutes prior to the match**

(To read the press release about the game CLICK HERE).

RAPIDS US OPEN CUP NOTES:

THIS WEEK’S GAMES:
Wednesday August 3 2005
(Lamar Hunt US Open Cup)
6:00pm (MT) Rapids at Minnesota Thunder
Webcast: Christian Lidholm

Saturday August 6 2005
(MLS)
7:00 p.m. (MT) Rapids vs. Los Angeles Galaxy at INVESCO Field at Mile High
TV: Altitude Sports & Entertainment (Pre-Game Show starts at 6:30 p.m. (MT)
RADIO: KKFN-950 AM (English) KMXA-1090 AM (Spanish)

LAST GAMES:
Sunday July 31 2005
(EXHIBITION MATCH)
Rapids 4 vs. Rochester Rhinos 2 at Frontier Field Rochester NY

Saturday July 23 2005
(MLS)
Rapids 4 vs. Chicago Fire 1 at INVESCO Field at Mile High

RAPIDS INJURY REPORT (updated 08-01-05):
Out: Matt Crawford (Right Hip); Josh Elbaum (Left Hernia); Pablo Mastroeni (Right Ankle Sprain)
Doubtful: NONE
Questionable: NONE
Probable: Mike Petke (Pulled Right Hip Muscle)

SUSPENDED:
Kyle Beckerman (Red Card on last Rapids US Open Cup game July 20 2004)

NATIONAL TEAM CALL-UPS:
NONE

OPEN CUP GAME NOTES:

LONG TIME NO SEE: Wednesday’s game against the Minnesota Thunder will mark the first time the Rapids have been matched up against a non-MLS team in the Open Cup since the 2002 US Open Cup when they defeated the Charleston Battery 1-0 in Charleston SC.

HOMECOMINGS: Leo Cullen and Sasha Gotsmanov both call Minnesota home and went to high school in the state. Cullen was a Parade All-American at St. Paul Academy in 1993 while Gotsmanov was an All-American at Minnesota's Woodbury High School in 2000.

WHO WANTS SASHA?: Apparently both teams do. The forward was drafted by the Thunder in the first round of the USL First Division draft on January 18 but was signed to a MLS developmental contract by the Rapids on April 8 2005.

NEXT ROUND: If the Rapids defeat the Thunder and move on in the competition they will face the winner of the Kansas City Wizards vs. Des Moines Menace game which is also being played Wednesday night. The Rapids have never faced a team from the Primer Development League in the Open Cup and they are 2-0 against the Wizards all time in Open Cup play.

RAPIDS DEFEAT RHINOS 4-2: The Colorado Rapids defeated the Rochester Raging Rhinos 4-2 in front of 7705 fans on Sunday night at Frontier Field in Rochester NY. Rochester took the lead in the forth minute with a goal by Edivaldo DaSilva. Just three minutes later Jean-Philippe Peguero stepped up and put a penalty kick into the corner of the goal. Kyle Beckerman won the penalty when he was pushed by Lenin Steenkamp as he went up for a header. Colorado took their first lead of the game in the 10th minute when Wolde Harris dropped a ball back for Beckerman who one timed the ball into the far corner of the Rochester net. Early in the second half Rochester was gifted penalty kick when Dan Gargan played the ball but was called for a phantom trip. DaSilva's shot went off Foss' glove and hit the post before it went into the goal. In the 74th minute Harris broke down the field and as his shot was stopped by Dusty Hudock Sasha Gotsmanov leaned down and headed the rebound into the goal for a 3-2 Rapid's lead. In the waning minutes backup goalkeeper Bouna Coundoul found Fabrice Noel with an outlet pass. Noel used his speed to out run several Rhino defenders on his way to scoring his first goal as a member of the Colorado Rapids.

CUNNINGHAM SHINES IN ALL-STAR APPEARANCE: The high-flying Rapids striker Jeff Cunningham justified his All-Star selection with his two second-half goals which lead the MLS All-Stars past Fulham FC 4-1 in a game played on Saturday July 30 at Crew Stadium. Cunningham the current MLS Leading goalscorer was a late addition to the All-Star team as a injury replacement. Despite the unusual method for his addition to the team Cunningham displayed his full potential with a star performance as a substitute. The game took place in Columbus and it was a sweet homecoming for Cunningham who played for the Crew from 1998-2004.

RAPIDS ENTER LAMAR HUNT U.S. OPEN CUP ON WEDNESDAY: The Colorado Rapids will enter the 2005 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup with a fourth round match this Wednesday August 3rd when they take on the Minnesota Thunder from the United Soccer League’s First Division at James Griffin Stadium in St. Paul Minnesota at 6:00 p.m. (MT). This time under the reins of Head Coach Fernando Clavijo the Black and Blue will make their run to conquer the trophy of the oldest and most distinguished sporting tournament in the United States. Clavijo’s experience in this tournament with New England led the Revolution to the Championship game in 2001 where they were defeated 2-1 by the Los Angeles Galaxy at Fullerton Stadium in California. The Thunder shocked everyone by eliminating Real Salt Lake in the previous round of the tournament by the score of 6-4.

TUNING UP FOR A-LEAGUE TEAMS: The Colorado Rapids defeated the Rochester Rhinos (USL 1st Division) 4-2 in and exhibition match played at Frontier Field on Sunday July 31st. The Black and Blue goals came from Jean Philippe Peguero Kyle Beckerman Sasha Gotsmanov and Fabrice Noel to defeat one of the USL 1st Division’s best teams. This game served as a good tuneup for the team’s US Open Cup match on Wednesday August 3rd when they take on another USL 1st Division team the Minnesota Thunder at 6:00 p.m. at James Griffin Stadium in St. Paul Minn. The Thunder currently are in the eighth position of the USL Division 1 standings with a 5-8-6 record.

RAPIDS IN THE POST-ALL-STAR BREAK: The Rapids are riding a four-game undefeated streak in their first game after the All-Star break. Since the 2001 season the Rapids have achieved a record of 3-0-1 and are 3-0 the past three seasons following the MLS All-Star break.

RAPIDS ALL-STAR REPRESENTATION: League-leading goalscorer Jeff Cunningham represented the Black and Blue in the 2005 MLS All-Star game in Columbus last weekend. Only once in Rapids history has the team not been represented in the showcase of MLS’s best talent....no Rapids players were chosen to the 2003 squad. In 1996 Marcelo Balboa was voted to the team but could not play due to injury.

FIESTA FUTBOLERA: The Colorado Rapids and Entravision Communications will present the first ever "Fiesta Futbolera" celebration which will take place on Saturday August 6th as part of the Rapids vs. Los Angeles Galaxy match at INVESCO Field at Mile High. The highlight of the special celebration will take place immediately following the game when recording artists "La Autoridad de la Sierra" perform a free concert inside the stadium. The free concert will also feature kids entertainer "El Morro