Boston City FC II edged Massachusetts rival Juve Pro Soccer 1-0 in the first qualifying round of the 2019 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup as Jhonata Batista’s goal seven minutes into the second half proved the difference.

An entertaining clash boiled over numerous times and Boston City finished the match with nine players as Matt Callahan and Jadson Leite both saw red, while ten-men Juve Pro had Edmilson Baros sent to the locker room.

The on-form Lions recorded their fourth win in a row since resuming the Bay State Soccer League Division 3 North season, but the visitors from the United Premier Soccer League had their chances.

A speculative long distance shot from Moises Lopes forced Jacob Wagmeister into a scrambling save as Juve Pro made their intentions know in the opening minute. The visitors should have taken the lead after 18 minutes when Antonio Horta crossed from the right and with the home defense flat-footed, but Carlos Monteiro powered a free header over the cross bar.

Nine minutes later, Lions skipper Michael Rincon stole possession on the right side to create a three versus one assault on goal but saw his bullet finish well blocked by former Boston City keeper Wanderson Macedo, having ignored the option to pass to Batista or Chris Gilbert to his left.

Boston City replaced Augusto Silva, who was carrying a yellow card, then Callahan was booked for retaliation after 38 minutes and only four minutes later picked up a second caution for a late foul, earning him a trip to the locker room.

Juve Pro’s extra man advantage lasted only four minutes as Baros was shown a straight red for a foul on Samuel Deossa.

The match opened up with ten men playing against ten after the break and with 52 minutes on the clock, a probing long ball from Marcelo Cunha was met by the outside of Batista’s boot to clip the ball past the advancing keeper and steal the lead for Boston City.

Both teams reshuffled midway through the second half and with Boston City seeking to finish off the tie and Juve Pro seeking an equalizer, Jadson Leite took the legs out from under his marker with 11 minutes remaining and the Lions were down to nine men.

A minute later, Batista should have claimed his second goal and sealed a place in the next round but skied a finish over a gaping goal from ten yards out after sub William Marcal had squared the ball from the end line.

Juve Pro’s final fling came a minute into four of injury time, but Wagmeister got down low to comfortably save a 25-yard free kick from Lopes.