USL First Division
Friday, April 20
Minnesota Thunder 0, Charleston Battery 0
It was a scoreless stalemate in the opener for both clubs. The home side appeared to have may have been the game-winner in the 70th minute midfielder when Jordan Hughes appeared to have given the Battery the lead after he slotted home from 12 yards out only to see the referee call the goal back for offsides.
Saturday, April 21
Montreal Impact 2, Atlanta Silverbacks 2
Traded from the Impact during the offseason, Dan Antoniuk delivered twice against his former club to give the Silverbacks a commanding 2-0 lead at the 62nd minute mark. But the defending two-time regular season champions showed resiliency and determination, cutting the deficit in half in the 75th courtesy of Matthew Palleschi and finding the equalizer in the 88th from Leonardo Di Lorenzo for the draw.
Minnesota Thunder 1, Carolina RailHawks 1
The expansion RailHawks found themselves on top early when recent signing Kupono Low found the back of the net on a 25-yard blast eight minutes in. Carolina took advantage of a tired Thunder squad and pushed the attack, but the inability to convert for a second goal proved costly as a 70th minute penalty conversion by Ansu Toure was enough to give the Thunder another draw on the road.
Seattle Sounders 0, Vancouver Whitecaps 1
The defending champions opened their title defense against arch-rival Seattle in a back-and-forth affair that saw the Vancouver outshoot the visiting Sounders 9-7. The difference proved to be finishing as Eduardo Sebrango found the winner in the 55th and the Vancouver keeper Tony Caig needed only one save as his counterpart was kept busy on the other end.
Puerto Rico Islanders 1, Portland Timbers 3
It was not a good return to the Rose City for former Timbers keeper Josh Saunders, who saw two free kicks go past him from former Sounder Andrew Gregor two minutes into the match and four minutes from time. It was also a tough night for Gregor, who also failed to convert on two penalties, striking a weak effort for a save on the first and missing on the second. Returning standout Luke Kreamalmeyer gave the Timbers a 2-0 lead eight minutes into the second half. The Islanders found life briefly in the 83rd when Alberto Zapata broke past the last defender to beat former Whitecaps goalkeeper Josh Wicks only to see Gregor restore the margin three minutes later.
USL Second Division
The defending champion Richmond Kickers opened their title defense Saturday with a 2-0 win on second half goals from Mike Burke and Sascha Gorres in a semifinal rematch against Cincinnati. The 2005 champion and 2006 finalist Charlotte Eagles gave expansion Crystal Palace Baltimore a rude welcome with a 4-1 defeat with two-time league MVP Jacob Coggins scoring twice. Harrisburg and Wilmington played to a 1-1 draw.