SCOTT PETERSON - Thursday, September 26, 2013
Fabian Johnson and Jermaine Jones both picked up cup wins for Hoffenheim and Schalke respectively, while Matt Taylor and Munster were outclassed.
Darmstadt 98 1 - 3 Schalke 04
Jermaine Jones put in 90 minutes of solid work for Schalke, who overcame a spirited effort by 3.Liga team Darmstadt to advance to the Round of 16 in the German Cup.
Jones took his usual starting spot in defensive midfield, putting in a full shift of work.
Schalke and Jones had their work cut out for them to break down Darmstadt, who parked the proverbial bus in front of their own goal to stymy the offensive skill of the Bundesliga squad.
As a result Schalke was limited to a handful of half chance, the bulk of which were fired from distance.
With possession approaching 80%, it was only a matter of time before the Königsblauen broke through the Darmstadt ranks.
In the 35th minute, Jefferson Farfan gave Schalke the lead after the Peruvian was fouled in the box. Farfan stepped up and converted the ensuing spot kick beating keeper Jan Zimmerman to his right.
Darmstadt, however, struck back almost immediately as Schalke proved once again how susceptible they are in the air. Bejnamin Gorka took advantage of confusion on a free kick, heading the ball back across the face of goal when an onrushing Hanno Behrens nodded home the equalizer in the 36th minute.
Schalke regained the lead in the 58th minute as Benedikt Höwedes found the back of the net with a looping header past the outstretched arms of Zimmerman.
After taking the lead for a second time, Schalke never seemed threatened and finally put the game away in the 86th minute on 18-year-old Max Meyer's strike from ten yards out.
Jones and Schalke are back in action on Saturday versus Fabian Johnson and Hoffenheim.
1899 Hoffenheim 3 - 0 Energie Cottbus (a.e.t.)
Fabian Johnson put in 120 minutes of work for Hoffenheim, who had to put in overtime to see off Cottbus in Round 2 of the German Cup.
Johnson made his seventh start of the season for head coach Markus Gidsol, with the versatile left-footer manning the left back spot.
After neither team found a goal in regulation, Hoffenheim finally broke the deadlock in the 96th minute as youngster Niklas Süle hammered home a rebound from eight yards out.
Hoffenheim put the game away in the 103rd minute as Roberto Firmino hit pay dirt after leaving two defenders in his dust, and piled on in the 117th through Sven Schipplock's right-footed effort.
Johnson and Hoffenheim travel to Gelsenkirchen on Saturday to do battle with Jermaine Jones and Schalke.
Preußen Munster 0 - 3 Augsburg
Matt Taylor went the distance for Munster, but the 3.Liga squad were overmatched and outclassed by FC Augsburg.
Taylor came into the match having tallied seven times in six Cup matches. The Ohioan, however, was unable to add to his total against the Bundesliga squad.
Augsburg took the lead in the first minute of first-half injury time as the bandaged head of Tobias Werner met an Andre Hahn cross to give the favorites the lead.
Shortly after the restart, Augsburg doubled their advantage as Werner added a second of his own with a left-footed shot past keeper Daniel Masuch in the 57th minute.
Sascha Mölders then closed out the game's scoring in the 59th minute with a powerful header as Hahn notched his second assist.
Taylor and Munster are back in action on Saturday in 3.Liga action versus Jahn Regensburg.
Andrew Wooten did not make the bench for Kaiserslautern, and John Anthony Brooks missed out for Hertha Berlin with an injury as the former beat the latter 3-1.
Alfredo Morales came on late as Ingolstadt advanced over FSV Frankfurt 2-0.