Commerce City, Colo. - Less than 24 hours after the 3-2 home win over Montreal, the Colorado Rapids had recovery and training session before departing for Tampa, Florida on Sunday afternoon. Twelve of the 14 players that played Saturday night are among the 18 players who will take on the Tampa Bay Rowdies in the third round of the 2012 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup on Tuesday, May 29 at Al Lang Stadium in St. Petersburg, Fla (5:30 pm MT).
"It’s tough, but it’s why we’re professionals, it’s why we’re here and it’s why we have a deep squad," said current team captain Drew Moor Saturday night. "That’s why we were relatively light this last week in the buildup to this game, because we didn’t want to look past this Montreal game but we know that (Open Cup match) is in 72 hours."
Moor, Kosuke Kimura, Tyrone Marshall, Hunter Freeman, Martin Rivero, Jaime Castrillon, Wells Thompson, Andre Akpan, and Tony Cascio all started against Montreal and made the trip to Florida. Also making the trip are second half substitutes Scott Palguta, Kamani Hill, and Harrison Henao.
"It’s a quick turnaround, and it’s a different competition," said Moor. "It’s always tough to go to an NASL place and play. It’s a big game for them; it’s a big game for their fans and I believe Tampa’s a pretty good team. We’ll get video on them and go over it the next couple days."
The Rapids enter the U.S. Open Cup proper for the first time since 2007. The past five years, the team failed to qualify through the Play-In game process. The last time Colorado played a team from Florida in the Open Cup was in 1999, when the Rapids defeated the Tampa Bay Mutiny 1-0 on their way to their only U.S. Open Cup Final.
The winner of Tuesday's third round match will advance to play the winner of the Sporting KC vs Orlando City Soccer in the fourth round on June 5.
Colorado Rapids roster for Open Cup third round match:
Goalkeepers: Stew Ceus, Ian Joyce,
Defenders: Drew Moor, Tyrone Marshall, Hunter Freeman, Kosuke Kimura, *Luis Zapata, Eddie Ababio, Scott Palguta
Midfielders: *Jaime Castrillon, *Martin Rivero, Wells Thompson, Kamani Hill, *Harrison Henao, Joseph Nane,
Forwards: *Edu, Andre Akpan, Tony Cascio
* count as international players. Open Cup rules permit teams up to five players that count as international players (non-resident) on a gameday roster.