Peoria, IL. (March 30, 2011) - The Colorado Rapids were eliminated from the U.S. Open Cup with a 2-1 loss to the Chicago Fire on Wednesday night in a play-in match at Shea Stadium at Bradley University. The Fire advance to play the winner of the San Jose versus Portland match for the right to enter the 98-year old tournament in June.
Chicago took the lead just before the half when they picked off a pass near midfield. Fire forward Diego Chaves took the first pass and advanced the ball to the top left side of the box for Gaston Puerari, who took two touches before shooting past goalkeeper Ian Joyce.
Colorado equalized just as quickly at the start of the second half. Quincy Amarikwa played a ball to the right side of the box where Andre Akpan beat goalkeeper Sean Johnson to the far side net.
The Fire took the lead with an almost improbable shot at the hour mark. Defender Jalil Anibaba moved the ball forward on the right from midfield and fired a shot from 40 yards that zipped into the top near post.
Colorado return to regular season play on Sunday, April 3 when they host DC United at Dick's Sporting Goods Park at 5 pm MT.
CHI - Gaston Puerari (Diego Chaves) 45'
COL - Andre Akpan (Quincy Amarikwa) 46'
CHI - Jalil Anibaba (unassisted) 61'
COLORADO: Ian Joyce, Ross LaBauex, Tyrone Marshall, Mike Holody, Scott Palguta, Wells Thompson, Steven Emory (Josh Janniere 80), Joseph Nane, Sanna Nyassi, Andre Akpan, Quincy Amarikwa.
CHICAGO: Sean Johnson, Cory Gibbs, Jalil Anibaba, Gonzalo Segares, Yamith Cuesta (Dasan Robinson 60'), Logan Pause, Davis Paul, Mike Videira, Patrick Nyarko, Diego Chaves (Orr Barrouch 91+), Gaston Puerari