On August 25, the 2022 Lamar Hunt US Open Cup pairings were announced, including the first-ever entry from the Ohio Valley Premier League. The Lexington Landsharks will face St. Louis Maritsa FC on Sunday September 19 at 3:00pm Eastern Time in O'Fallon, Illinois at the O'Fallon Family Sports Park. Due to the COVID pandemic, the 2020 and 2021 US Open Cups were both abandoned and the 2022 edition will be the 107th edition of the historic tournament.
A startup club in winter 2019, the Lexington Landsharks were announced as an inaugural member of the Ohio Valley Premier League. The Club will be the first-ever representative from Lexington, Kentucky in the Open Cup and only the second-ever entry from Kentucky through Open Division Qualifying. The Landsharks have been at the top of the goal-scoring charts in the OVPL thanks to Amadi Mubelela. A forward from Lexington, Mubelela has scored 14 goals and added one assist in the 16 games that Lexington has played in their OVPL tenure. Young talent, Ethan Vermillion, was critical for the club's first season as he was co-leader in assists in the League with three. Vermillion is the fourth youngest player to play in the League and the youngest to record a point.
About the OVPL
The Ohio Valley Premier League (OVPL) was created to operate a competitive soccer circuit offering the only adult amateur competition throughout the Ohio Valley (Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia) region. Player development is a central focus of the League, as the League strives to promote the region at a national level.
The OVPL seeks to grow the game of soccer in the region by providing a highly competitive soccer league for men, women, boys, and girls of all ages. The League is sanctioned through US Club Soccer and provides access to competing in the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup, the nation's longest-running tournament.
About US Club Soccer
US Club Soccer will foster the growth and development of soccer clubs throughout the United States to create the best possible development environment for players of all ages in every club.
About the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup
Embarking on its 107th edition, the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup is U.S. Soccer's National Championship. The history-filled tournament is conducted on a single-game, knockout basis and open to all professional and amateur teams affiliated with U.S. Soccer, with pro sides receiving byes to the later rounds. Having crowned its first champion in 1914, the oldest national soccer competition in the USA was renamed in 1999 to honor American soccer pioneer Lamar Hunt.
Atlanta United FC is the reigning Open Cup champion, having earned the club's first tournament title with a 2-1 victory against Minnesota United FC on Aug. 27, 2019 in front of an Open Cup Final record 35,709 fans at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.