BOYDS, Md. – There’s just something about Dwayne De Rosario and the US Open Cup.
After scoring a hat trick against Philadelphia one round prior, D.C. United’s captain scored the game-winning goal against the New England Revolution with a header in the 69th minute to help D.C. advance to the semifinal round, 3-1, in Wednesday night’s quarterfinal match at the Maryland SoccerPlex.
D.C. United forward Chris Pontius scored his second goal in as many matches and added an assist, while Juan Toja scored for the Revs in the 53rd minute. Lionard Pajoy added an 87th-minute penalty kick to seal the deal.
United will travel to face Chicago at Toyota Park in the semifinals on Aug. 7.
Playing together up top for the first time this season, De Rosario and Pontius – who scored his first of the MLS season on penalty kick against San Jose this past Saturday – worked well with one another.
De Rosario’s goal stemmed from a corner kick by Pontius that De Rosario headed home from the far side of the box.
Forward Juan Agudelo nearly evened the match in the 85th minute when he hammered a turn-around shot, which beat United goalkeeper Joe Willis, off the post. The shot stayed out and two minutes later Pajoy added United’s third goal on a penalty kick after he was taken down in the box.
Pontius opened the scoring in the 44th minute when DeLeon crossed a ball into the box that was deflected by New England midfielder Scott Caldwell. The ball trickled to the right side, where Pontius turned and deposited a right-footed finish into the bottom left corner of the net, by a diving Reis.
United dominated the first half, peppering Reis with 10 shots, five on target, to New England’s one shot on Willis.
New England leveled the score after James Riley was called for a foul outside the area. Toja lined up from 25 yards out and blasted a rising shot that tipped off Willis’ hand, banged off the crossbar and then into the net.
United are now 3-1-1 across all competitions in their previous five matches as they continue to find better footing.
The Revs, who featured a high-powered offense in their first two Open Cup matches by scoring nine goals combined against Rochester and New York, will next travel to face Chivas USA in MLS action on Saturday.
United, meanwhile, are still alive on their quest to win their third Open Cup (1996, 2008), while New England must wait another year to attempt to add a second USOC title to the trophy case (2007).