Sporting KC advances past San Jose to US Open Cup finals

Sporting KC goalkeeper Tim Melia. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Sporting KC goalkeeper Tim Melia. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

Sporting KC has moved one step closer to winning the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup. A win over San Jose on penalty kicks has SKC in the finals.

It has been a very goo season so far for Sporting KC, and that continued last night with a big win for the club. SKC beat San Jose in penalty kicks to advance to the finals of the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup. This is a big step for a team with some very high hopes for their 2017 campaign. A US Open Cup trophy is now within their grasp.

The win came in a fashion that’s become fairly familiar for Sporting KC fans this year. It was a low scoring affair that saw KC goalkeeper Tim Melia and the defense put up a solid performance. In fact, it was Melia who sealed the victory by blocking the final penalty kick of the night.

It has been a great season for Tim Melia, who remains the top statistical goalkeeper in all of MLS this year. He got snubbed out of the all star game for this season, but anyone who has watched Sporting play this year knows just how valuable he’s been.

Young Attackers Take Center Stage

In the wake of trading away Dom Dwyer, Sporting KC has actually found a bit of offense in their youthful front group. Latif Blessing, Diego Rubio, and Daniel Salloi have all stepped up and become guys that can come through for the team. Rubio scored the club’s only regulation time goal last night while Salloi provided the deciding penalty kick.

This young trio gives SKC something to build around for the future. It’s been a pretty common theme this year that Sporting struggles on offense. So the organization is definitely hoping that these three youngsters can be the next wave of talent.

On To The Finals

More from Sporting Kansas City

Sporting KC will now await the winner of the New York Red Bulls and FC Cincinnati. The Red Bulls are the obvious favorite here as the current fourth place team in the MLS Eastern Conference. FC Cincinnati meanwhile is a complete “cinderella team” coming from the United Soccer League.

There shouldn’t be any preference in who Sporting faces in the finals. SKC has already beaten the Red Bulls once this season, and they should certainly be able to defeat a USL team. So either way you would have to give Kansas City the advantage. That has to give Peter Vermes a little bit of confidence in his team’s chances.

It has already been a very good season for Sporting KC as they still hold the lead in their conference. After a couple of disappointing campaigns, it’s good to see SKC playing at such a high level again. If this team can keep the momentum going, they will be a very tough out down the road in the postseason.

Sporting KC is getting back to their winning ways. Already the most successful professional sports team in Kansas City, this is an organization with its sights set on championships. That includes the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup. Now one step closer, it’s time for SKC to start bringing home some awards again.