RECAP: MIDWEEK NORWEGIAN CUP ACTION
Kenneth di Vita Jensen and Steve Clark helped Hønefoss to a huge upset over Mikkel Diskerud and Stabaek, while Josh Gatt netted twice for Molde in their blowout win in the third round of the Norwegian Cup.
Hønefoss BK 3 - 1 Stabaek IF
Norwegian-American forward Kenneth di Vita Jensen was on-target for a third-minute goal on Wednesday night, as second-tier Hønefoss embarrassed Mikkel Diskerud and Stabaek.
Jensen was pulled out of the game at halftime due to what appeared to be a minor injury, while both Clark and Diskerud played the full 90 minutes for their respective teams.
Eying an upset in front of their home crowd from the very beginning, Hønefoss already took the lead in the third minute as Helge Haugen spotted Jensen racing upfield and fed him with a perfect through-ball, which the 20 year-old caught up with and swiftly put away into the corner for 1-0.
Stabaek responded quickly, pulling even two minutes later as Hønefoss Leo Olsen misplaced the ball in his own penalty area, allowing Pálmi Rafn Pálmason to rush in and put the ball away into an open net from two yards out.
Jensen was pulled at halftime, presumably for a small knock, however the Hønefoss team kept churning, jumping into the lead in the 69th minute.
A poor clearance out of the Stabaek area left the ball to drop at the feet of Kjetil Byfuglien, who made a slick move to work into the box and pick out teammate Kevin Bosse Beugre for a blast which beat Stabaek keeper Jan Kjell Larsen for 2-1.
The jubilant Hønefoss squad then added an exclamation point to their win three minutes before full time, when Tor-Øyvind Hovda set up Paul Obiefule for a tight-angled shot which brought the score to its final 3-1 advantage for the hosts.
Bounced out of the Cup at an unexpectedly early stage, Diskerud and Stabaek will focus solely on their league campaign, beginning with Sunday's visit to Start Kristiansand.
Clark and Hønefoss await the result of Friday's fourth-round draw, but must also concentrate on their still-shaky Adeccoligaen campaign, beginning with Sunday's home game against Strømmen IF.
Tiller IL 1 - 7 Molde FK
Josh Gatt netted a pair of goals for Molde in their blow-out win over fourth-tier Tiller IL, as they had no problems to win on the road and advance to the next round of the Norwegian Cup.
Gatt and American U-20 teammate Sean Cunningham both played the full 90 minutes as has been customary throughout the team's cup run, with Gatt manning the team's right wing and Cunningham the left side of defense.
An overpowered Tiller put up the outward image of a fight against their top-flight opponents, until it all started to go wrong just past the first quarter-hour.
Daniel Chukwu Chima opened the scoring for Molde in the 17th minute as he overpowered a pair of Tiller players in the box to smash a shot to the near post, however the flood gates really opened just past the half hour.
First, a Gatt run up the right allowed Chima to set up Jose Mota for 2-0 in the 35th minute, then Gatt made it three for the visitors three minutes later as he coolly stuck a shot through the Tiller keeper's legs.
One minute later it was 4-0 as Mattias Mostrøm lobbed the Tiller keeper, the Gatt grabbed his second of the evening eight minutes past the break as he was played through on goal for a straightforward chance to add to Tiller keeper Ørjan Bøe Thygesen's woes.
Mota then added another pair to complete his hat trick, first collecting a cross from Emil Johansson on the left side of goal and striking it to the far post in the 57th minute, then netting his third for 7-0 20 minutes later from the middle of the penalty area.
Tiller prevented the shut-out as Morten Torset headed in a corner with nine minutes later, however that would be the final excitement of the game, with Molde easily coming out victors.
Molde will hope to add another to the win column as they resume Tippeligaen play on Sunday with a trip to relegation-threatened FK Haugesund.
Kyle Helton saw the final eight minutes of action on Wednesday night, entering Mjøndalen's game against cup holders Strømsgodset IF with the team down by a 2-1 margin, but was unable to spark the home team to a come-back as they crashed out of the competition. His American teammate Rhett Bernstein is out for the season with a knee injury.
Colin Burns did not take the field for Sandefjord on Wednesday as they held a scoreless draw with hosts Lillestrøm SK through 120 minutes but eventually succumbed 5-4 in a heartbreaking penalty shootout.
Sogndal backup keeper Joseph Bendik did not play in the team's 2-0 home win over Asker.