The Union were a combined nine games under .500 during the previous two seasons in Major League Soccer play, but when it came time for the U.S. Open Cup, they played like world-beaters - at least until the final.
This season, the Union are 7-5-5 in MLS and stand in first place in the Eastern Conference. And their strong play in the U.S. Open Cup has continued.
With a comeback 2-1 win over the visiting New York Red Bulls on Wednesday, the Union have advanced to the U.S. Open Cup quarterfinals July 20 against the host New England Revolution.
This is the third straight year the Union have reached the quarterfinals of the U.S. Open Cup, a tournament that debuted in 1914 and is open to all affiliated amateur and professional teams in the United States.
In the previous two seasons, the Union advanced to the Open Cup final only to lose heartbreakers.
In 2014, they fell, 3-1 in extra time to the visiting Seattle Sounders. Last season at home they fell to Sporting Kansas City on penalty kicks.
Yet here they are again making another run.
Now in their seventh season, the Union have a 14-6 all-time record in the Open Cup and are 10-2 under coach Jim Curtin.
"This group has a way of winning in this tournament, surviving and advancing," Curtin said.
The Union survived a first half when they were dominated but trailed by just 1-0. Then with two goals by Chris Pontius on assists by Ilsinho, the Union turned it around in the second half.
Like many of their previous U.S. Open Cup wins, it wasn't an artistic success for 90 minutes, but the Union fought and clawed their way to another quarterfinal.