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Kickers in 2nd Round of the Open Cup on Wednesday against Christos FC

A bit of mid-week soccer with a lot history.

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What the heck is the US Open Cup?

Oh, just the third oldest soccer tournament IN THE WORLD!

The first Open Cup was held in 1913, and while there has been some tweaking here and there, the basic premise remains: teams from all levels of soccer (amateurs to pros) compete against one another.

Think of it like March Madness. That basketball tourney appeals to sports fans because small schools face off against collegiate titans…and sometimes the small schools prevail. Now what if March Madness also included amateur and NBA teams? That’s the Open Cup.

This will be the 18th time the Kickers have qualified for the U.S. Open Cup over the past 22 seasons, with an overall record of 26–15 during tournament play and winning the Cup in 1995. In 2011, the Kickers made it all the way to the semi-finals, beating the Columbus Crew and Sporting Kansas City and were the first lower division team to defeat back-to-back MLS teams on the road.

Three Things to Kickabout

  1. Who are Ya?– One of the joys of the Open Cup is facing a team you know nothing about. The profile on USL calls Chirstos FC and they have the attitude to match:  This isn’t your average Sunday-morning team. They’re no beer-league for-funners or pub-crawlers making up the numbers and playing for giggles. “We’ve lost maybe one of our last 90 games,” said Caringi, who spearheads the attack for Christos FC, founded by Greek immigrants 20 years ago and taking their first team to new heights in recent seasons.
  2. Eyes on Caringi –Peter Caringi is Christos FC and former PDL player. He scored a hat-trick last week against Fredricksburg FC in the first round of the Open Cup and the Kickers will need to shut him down.
  3. Goals, we don’t got ’em – I really need to just copy and paste a bit about Richmond needing to find its finishing touch. The same was true this past Saturday. Kickers had 10 shot and only 2 were on goal. The result? Another zilch on the scoreboard. This needs to change.

Prediction

If the Kickers don’t win this one it’s a sad day in Richmond. Having a busy schedule shouldn’t be a problem for the Kickers and even with the starters resting should win. Richmond 3 –Christos FC 1. The fact that I don’t make this more of a blow out speaks volumes.

Official Kickers Preview

The Richmond Kickers open up their quest for the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Wednesday, as they host Christos FC (Md.) in the Second Round of the tournament. This marks the first-ever meeting between the two clubs. The match will be streamed live on RichmondKickers.com and USSoccer.com. Fans who purchase tickets to see the Premier League in RVA, when the Kickers host Swansea City AFC July 19, will receive a free ticket to this match.

Christos FC is a local qualifier from the Maryland Major Soccer League, Maryland’s premier amateur adult soccer league. The regining Amateur Open Cup and National Cup champions first picked up a qualifying win over former Kickers Open Cup opponent Aegean Hawks 1-3 after extra time September 10, 2016. Christos followed that with a Second Round qualifying win over West Chester United 1-0 on October 16, 2016. Christos FC defeated NPSL side Fredericksburg FC 3-0 in the First Round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, on the strength of a hat trick from Peter Caringi III. Goalkeeper Phillip Saunders also kept a clean sheet in this contest.

The Kickers played to a 0-0 draw with the Harrisburg City Islanders the last time out. The game was not without its chances, as the sides totaled 19 shots. Richmond’s best chance came towards the end of the second half when Yudai Imura sent a ground pass through the defense, finding forward Alhaji Kamara, who drove into the penalty box and fired a shot, but City Islanders’ goalkeeper Brandon Miller was able to deflect the ball away with his knees. Matt Turner earned his first clean sheet of the 2017 season in goal. Richmond has posted a record of 2-4-2 in the USL Regular Season, including a 2-2-2 record at City Stadium.

Following this matchup, the Kickers embark on a three-match road trip starting Sunday, May 21 when they take on long-time rivals Rochester Rhinos for a 6:05 p.m. kickoff at Capelli Sport Stadium. The match will be streamed live on uslsoccer.com/match-center. Richmond continues their three-match road swing at Toronto FC II Wednesday, May 24 and at the Ottawa Fury FC Saturday, May 27.

Players to Watch

Kickers: Midfielder Yudai Imura (#14) returned to the lineup on Saturday after missing six weeks with a hamstring injury. He came close to an assist on Alhaji Kamara’s shot that was well saved by Brandon Miller on Saturday. The Kickers’ star midfielder had a breakout season in 2016, his sophomore season in Richmond, where he appeared in 30 of 33 games, scoring 11 goals and adding two assists. Forward Sunny Jane (#10) made his first start for Richmond on Saturday after two appearances off the bench earlier in the season coming off a knee injury. His quick ground shot on a through ball from Braeden Troyer in the 19th minute rolled just wide of the Harrisburg goal. The Lesotho International appeared in 25 games last season, scoring four goals and assisting on two in his first season for the Kickers. Midfielder Fred Owusu Sekyere (#4) has appeared in all eight of Richmond’s matches this season, starting in seven and is having a breakout season for the Kickers. He assisted on the first goal of the season and has scored two of the team’s four goals in this campaign. The Ghanaian is second on the team with 645 minutes played this season and is first with six shots on goal and 17 fouls won.

Christos FC: Forward Peter Caringi III (#9) scored a hat trick in the first round match on the road at NPSL side Fredericksburg FC. The University of Maryland-Baltimore County midfielder was selected by the Montreal Impact at the 2014 MLS SuperDraft, but ended up signing his first professional contract with USL side Oklahoma City Energy FC. He made 11 appearances for the club in its first season, scoring one goal. Goalkeeper Phillip Saunders (#0) earned a clean sheet in the First Round match against Fredericksburg FC. Signing his first professional contract with BÍ Bolungarvík of the Icelandic First Division, the former University of Maryland-Baltimore County won the 2013 America East title in his senior season, posting a goals against average of 0.70 for the season, the 19th best record in the NCAA in 2013. Midfielder Mamadou Kansaye (#2) posted an assist on Caringi’s second goal of the match in the 3-1 win over Fredericksburg FC. After completing his senior season at the University of Maryland – Baltimore County, Kansaye signed his first professional contract with the Charlotte Independence of the USL, making four appearances for the club in 2015.

Kickers Sign Matt Bolduc and Brandon Eaton

The Richmond Kickers are pleased to announce the addition of midfielders Matt Bolduc and Brandon Eaton.  Both players will be eligible for selection for Wednesday’s Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Second Round match versus Christos FC at City Stadium.

Bolduc signs with the Kickers after making 19 appearances with USL Eastern Conference rivals Harrisburg City Islanders in 2016.  He added one assist during the City Islander’s 3-1 win at FC Montreal and also contributed to a pair of shutouts.  A native of Peterborough, New Hampshire, he made 16 appearances during one season at the University of Massachusetts before a one year stint with Mass United of the National Premier Soccer League (NPSL).

Signing his first professional contract, Eaton made 59 appearances with Virginia Commonwealth University over three seasons, adding two goals his senior year.  A native of Chesapeake, Virginia, he spent one year at Virginia Tech before transferring to VCU.

Ticket Deal

TWO GAME PACK – ORDER NOW!
FREE admission to Wednesday’s Open Cup game with purchase of a Swansea game ticket!

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Richard Hayes is the co-founder of RVAHub. When he isn't rounding up neighborhood news, he's likely watching soccer or chasing down the latest and greatest board game.

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Suspects Sought in Commercial Burglary on Forest Hill Avenue

At approximately 12:10 a.m. on Tuesday, March 31, officers responded to the S&K Mini Mart in the 3400 block of Forest Hill Avenue for a burglary alarm that had just gone off. Once on scene, police found the front glass window smashed in.

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From RPD:

At approximately 12:10 a.m. on Tuesday, March 31, officers responded to the S&K Mini Mart in the 3400 block of Forest Hill Avenue for a burglary alarm that had just gone off. Once on scene, police found the front glass window smashed in.

Security video shows the two adult male suspects using a lead pipe to break the window and get inside the business. They went directly behind the counter and stole cigarettes and money. The suspects left the same way they came in.

Anyone with information about the identity of these suspects is asked to call Second Precinct Detective J. Thondique at (804) 646-8170 or contact Crime Stoppers at (804) 780-1000 or at www.7801000.com. The P3 Tips Crime Stoppers app for smartphones may also be used. All Crime Stoppers methods are anonymous.

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Artist Keith Ramsey Uses his Welder to Help Healthcare Workers

People are pitching in to help fight COVID-19. Local artist Keith Ramsey was able to pivot his skills in an amazing way.

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Keith Ramsey is a multi-talented artist. In addition to fine art painting he also has a more industrial tact with some of his work that uses metal and a welder. It’s because of this background and his generous nature that the following story is not surprising in the least.

In Keith’s own words:

Last Monday someone contacted me with an issue. They needed a welder to help put together @12+ racks for a medical facility to help sterilize much needed medical supplies to help with the influx of COVID19 patients to come.

I had projects already in the workshop, but before he could get halfway into asking if I could help, It was already a hard “YES.”

After about a week of straight 9-hour days and more welding in a short amount of time I have ever done, we got the racks out the door!

The thing about that is, I was proud to be able to do something… anything, I could do to help in this crisis our nation, and the world, is facing. It was a small part by comparison to what others are doing and sacrificing, but it was what I personally could do with the resources I had.

I believe THAT’S how we are going to beat COVID19 back. Everyone doing what they can, when they can to help out. Because, as we all know, this thing doesn’t care about who you are, who you vote for, where you’re from and what you look like.

And we need to be the same way to combat this.
That’s my two cents. #metalsupermarkets #ramseyartworks

You can check Keith’s work at Ramsey Art Works.

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Lane Closure for Paving on Forest Hill Avenue

Due to reduced traffic in the area listed above, construction work on the ongoing Forest Hill Avenue Improvement Project will start earlier and end later each day.

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Lane Closure – Forest Hill Avenue
WHO: City of Richmond Department of Public Works (https://twitter.com/DPW_RichmondVA)

WHAT: Lane Closure

WHEN: Monday, April 6 through Wednesday, June 10 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
WHERE: Forest Hill Avenue between Hathaway Road and Powhite Parkway (located in the 4th voter district)
BACKGROUND: Due to reduced traffic in the area listed above, construction work on the ongoing Forest Hill Avenue Improvement Project will start earlier and end later each day.

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The City of Richmond Department of Public Works (DPW) is one of only 146 accredited public works agencies in the United States. DPW’s portfolio comprises a wide array of services to include leaf collection; street, sidewalk and alley maintenance; trash collection; recycling; urban forestry; signs; signals and pavement markings; grass cutting; graffiti removal; and parking. In addition, DPW issues permits for working in the city’s right-of-way, manages City bridges, implements street and traffic Capital Projects, manages Richmond’s Bike Share program and maintains the fleet of city vehicles. DPW’s operating budget comes from the general fund of the City of Richmond. For more information about DPW services, click here or call 3-1-1.

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