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Miami FC Costly Red Card Fuels Tormenta FC Second Half Comeback in Open Cup 2-4 Loss

April 18, 2024 - United Soccer League Championship (USL)
Miami FC News Release

Miami, FL - Miami FC's Lamar Hunt US Open Cup ended Wednesday night at FIU Soccer Stadium after a first half red card and three second half goals from League One side Tormenta FC saw the South Georgia squad move on to the round of 32 in the US Open Cup.

The first fifteen minutes of the match Tormenta FC proved to be the early aggressors. The visitors pressed Miami consistently and that aggression paid off early for Tormenta as Miami was guilty of another mistake in defense that has unfortunately plagued the young squad early this season.

Miami FC goalkeeper Khadim Ndiaye, making his first start with Daniel Gagliardi resting, came out of his goal to handle a cross from Tormenta FC. Ndiaye misjudged the cross and the ball bounced to the head of Conor Doyle to put Tormenta FC up 1-0 early on.

That goal seemed to wake Miami FC up, and the hosts began to control much of the possession for the rest of the half. It paid off quickly for Miami as young Brazilian striker Luis Pedro took a pass from Knutson, made a beautiful turn and unleashed a rocket off his left foot that found the top corner of the net in the 20th minute.

While Miami continued to press and find more chances, Tormenta FC's keeper made several saves to keep the score level at 1-1. Then in stoppage time of the first half, the entire match was turned on its head.

After getting fouled while trying to collect a Tormenta FC cross, Miami keeper Ndiaye fell to the ground and appeared to retaliate against the Tormenta FC player. That reaction caused a scrum after the whistle and resulted in Ndiaye being issued a red card for retaliation. Miami FC Academy product, Felipe Rodriguez made his professional debut in goal replacing Ndiaye and Miami would be forced to play a man down for the rest of the match.

However, the first half drama was not done. Just before the half, Miami put together a quick counter getting the ball down the sideline to Frank Lopez. The striker made a great move and put in a ball to the oncoming Luis Pedro who hammered the chance into the back of the net for his brace, and incredibly Miami was on top 2-1 heading into halftime.

While Miami held the lead in the second half, Tormenta FC began to work its one man advantage and apply consistent pressure. The homegrown product Rodriguez, however was up to the challenge and made several great saves to keep the hosts up 2-1.

Eventually, the pressure and one man advantage started to take its toll on Miami and Tormenta finally took advantage in the 69th minute. Connor Doyle fired in a shot that seemed to be going wide, but unfortunately the ball deflected off Miami FC's Knutson and landed in the back of the net to level the score at 2-2.

Miami, desperate to not see the match go to extra time being down a man, started to press higher and almost found a game winner in the 80th minute when Cardona put a dangerous cross right across the goal of Tormenta FC. However, both Genzano and Gavilanes just missed the ball and it bounced past them both for a goal kick. With Miami pressing for a winner, Tormenta took advantage of the extra man and found their game winner in the 88th minute off a cross that Callum Stretch was able to out jump the Miami defense and put past the helpless Rodriguez to put Tormenta FC on top 3-2.

Miami was not finished though and continued to press to find the equalizer. Gavilanes found space and fired yet another fantastic shot, but this time the shot went just wide.

Minutes later in stoppage time, Tormenta FC caught Miami on another counter while trying to equalize and Tormenta's Vivas put the ball past Rodriguez on the breakaway to seal Miami FC's fate.

Miami will now quickly turn around after a difficult result and prepare for more USL Championship action as it hosts Birmingham Legion FC back at FIU Soccer Stadium. Kickoff will be at 7:00pm ET. Tickets for the match are on sale now at

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