Despite having beaten the Revolution just eight days prior, the Red Bulls' matchup on Thursday against the Revs seemed even more daunting than the first one: The Revs were sending out their best offensive players, while the Red Bulls were actually forced to downgrade their defense and play Tyler Adams at CB in place of an injured Damien Perrinelle.
Yet by hook or by crook, the Red Bulls got the victory - and their first-ever back-to-back road wins against the Revs in the process.
Backup GK Ryan Meara was solid yet again, easily defending most of the Revs shots and only getting nearly beaten once or twice the whole game.
But as it so often has been for the last four years, it was Bradley Wright-Phillips who got the game-changing goal.
After a Revs defender was ejected for a red card in the 75th minute, Felipe found the Red Bulls Goal King for a toe-tap goal in the 87th that was all they needed to secure the victory.
And with that, the Red Bulls are back in the Lamar U.S. Open Semi-Finals for the first time since 2003.
Here are the RBNY player ratings vs New England Revolution:
Ryan Meara - 8
Meara wasn't challenged nearly as much in this one as the previous two Open Cup games, but with his Odell Beckham Jr-esque jumping and catching, he kept the team out of danger consistently.
Connor Lade - 7
Aaron Long - 7
Sal Zizzo - 7
Tyler Adams - 7
Not a bad first start at defender for AmeriKante. Perhaps deploying him at the position will be something Marsch does on a more regular basis.
Felipe - 8 (Man of the Match)
A strong performance, a brilliant touch on the assist to BWP's game-winning goal, and some Oscar-worthy theatrics to milk the clock at the end made Thursday one of Felipe's best games of the year.
Sean Davis - 7
Davis's recent strong form at defensive midfielder has allowed Marsch to experiment with deploying Tyler Adams on defense.
Alex Muyl - 5
It remains baffling how Marsch continues to use Muyl over any of his other attackers.
Sacha Kljestan - 6
Despite opening his 2017 account two weeks ago, Kljestan still looks like he doesn't know how to take a shot.
Daniel Royer - 7
Bradley Wright-Phillips - 8
After going several years without scoring a goal in New England, he has one in back-to-back games against them. Kudos!
It was announced today that the Red Bulls will face either Miami FC or FC Cincinnati on the road for the Open Cup Semi-Finals. Should they advance, they will either host the San Jose Earthquakes, who they will also host at Red Bull Arena next week, or go on the road against Sporting Kansas City, who already own a 2-0 win over RBNY this season and have won the tournament twice in the last five years.
Still, you can't help but shake that nagging suspicion that of all teams in the MLS, the Red Bulls are the most likely candidate to lose to a second division team in the Open Cup Semi-Finals. Let's not forget: Orlando City, Columbus, Chicago and Atlanta all thought that they were getting an easy win when they drew Miami and Cincinnati in the earlier rounds.
The Red Bulls cannot afford to take their foot off the gas in this tournament and might even need to rest players in the Hudson River Derby game on August 6 to avoid fatigue. Of course, that strategy didn't work earlier this season...