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Cup Update: America's Oldest Tournament Returns to River City

May 2, 2024 - United Soccer League Championship (USL)
Sacramento Republic FC News Release

Starting next week, Republic FC is back in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup where the Quails will face off with regional rival Monterey Bay F.C. in the Round of 32. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m. on May 7 at Heart Health Park.

What started with 95 teams has been cut down to 32. Cupsets have been frequent in 2024, with 13 teams punching above their weight and besting a higher-division opponent. Squads across the nation have made their communities proud, showing well against top-level teams.

Most notably, San Francisco's El Farolito advanced past two pro squads - Portland Timbers 2 and Central Valley Fuego FC - before falling to cross-bay rival Oakland Roots. On the other coast, NPSL's Miami United also provided two shockers, besting MLS NEXT Pro club Chattanooga FC and NISA's Club de Lyon. USL League Two's Vermont Green earned the first Open Cup victory ever for a team in the Green Mountain State, besting Lexington SC. Locally, NPSL squad FC Folsom qualified for the tournament and played a tight match with Central Valley Fuego FC in the first round.

There aren't any amateur squads remaining, with the last two bowing out in the third round. Plenty of upset opportunities remain - 11 of 16 third-round matchups feature teams against higher-division opponents, and a second or third-division club is guaranteed to advance to the Round of 16 in every group. In the Bay Area, Oakland Roots and San Jose Earthquakes face off for the first time in Cup play, Four-time Open Cup winners Seattle Sounders host Louisville City, while League One's Union Omaha gets a crack at Sporting Kansas City on home turf - a rematch of their 2022 quarterfinal meeting in KC.

History: Republic FC in the Round of 32

For the first time, Sacramento enters the competition as one of the final 32 teams. The club debuts in the 2024 edition alongside the eight participating MLS sides, and seven others from the USL Championship based on 2023 results.

Republic FC has made the Round of 32 in five straight editions of the tournament and six of its seven previous entries. Last season, Colorado Rapids visited Heart Health Park in the Round of 32. After going down two scores - the club battled back to even the score line in the second half behind a brace from Sebastian Herrera. But the squad's cup run came to an end there, falling to the Rocky Mountain side 4-2.

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