U.S. Open Cup

U.S. Open Cup Preview: NYCFC II to take on Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC in U.S. Open Cup Round of 32

New York City FC II continues representing MLS NEXT Pro in the U.S. Open Cup. Matt Pilkington's side is set to welcome the USL Championship's Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC to Belson Stadium this Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. ET on MLSsoccer.com in an effort to make the last 16 of the domestic cup competition.

A thrilling extra-time win over USL Championship side Hartford Athletic propelled NYCFC II into the tournament's latter stages. Key attackers such as Jonathan Shore and Maximo Carrizo carry strong form into another encounter with a USL Championship club.

Carrizo scored the winning goal in NYCFC II's 3-2 triumph against Hartford Athletic in the third round of the U.S. Open Cup. NYCFC II fell behind shortly into extra time after regulation ended 1-1. Taylor Calheira scored his second game goal to equalize in the 99th minute. Carrizo powerfully volleyed a shot to bring NYCFC II an incredible comeback win.

NYCFC II has seen mixed results from its first seven games of the 2024 MLS NEXT Pro season. The NYC II attack showed promise, with 12 goals in the first seven games. Jonathan Shore leads the charge with four goals in six starts. Carrizo, a 16-year-old who signed a first-team contract in 2022 at 14, has been an early revelation for the club, scoring two Open Cup goals and adding two goals and two assists in league play.

Jonathan Jimenez and Ronald Arévalo continue to lead the team after productive 2023 seasons. Arévalo has scored two goals and added two assists so far in 2024, and Jimenez has scored two goals.

Switchbacks FC enters the cup tie looking to buck a difficult run of games to start the USL Championship season. The team lies 11th in the Western Conference with a 2-1-5 record. However, recent form has turned positive, with Switchbacks FC taking four points from the past two league games.

Haitian forward Ronaldo Damus leads the team in scoring with three goals. Goalkeeper Christian Herrera is among the top shot-stoppers in the USL Championship with 24 total saves.

Top-level clubs will present a new challenge for all teams remaining in the Open Cup, as Major League Soccer and USL Championship clubs enter the competition in the Round of 32. Eight MLS teams enter the competition after nine MLS NEXT Pro clubs began their cup journey in earlier rounds.

Following Wednesday's cup match, NYCFC II continues in MLS NEXT Pro action on Monday, traveling to SeatGeek Stadium to take on Chicago Fire FC II.