MLS Roundup: Bradley Wright-Phillips ties MLS single-season goals mark
Sporting Kansas City 0 – New York 2
Bradley Wright-Phillips tied the MLS single-season goalscoring record with his double to secure the victory at Sporting Park on Sunday. Wright-Phillips matched the 27-goal hauls by Roy Lassiter (1996) and Chris Wondolowski (2012) with a pair of predatory finishes to settle matters. Tim Cahill prompted the first goal with a clever pass behind the line after just 15 minutes, while Wright-Phillips produced a persistent and ultimately stunning solo effort to grab the second in the 70th minute. The result arranged a Knockout Round tie between the two teams at Red Bull Arena on Thursday.
Columbus 2 – Philadelphia 1
Bernardo Anor completed the Crew’s stunning ascent to the third seed with his late winner at Crew Stadium on Sunday. Jairo Arrieta opened the scoring for the home side inside the opening half-hour, but the Union responded and pushed onwards for much of the second half. Zach Pfeffer tallied his first MLS goal in the late stages to give the eliminated Union a chance to secure a point, but Anor poked home in the waning moments to secure the points. The triumph – coupled with Sporting Kansas City’s loss to New York – arranged an Eastern Conference semifinal date with New England.
Chivas USA 1 – San Jose 0
Chivas USA won perhaps the final game in club history through Felix Borja’s first-half goal at StubHub Center on Sunday. Borja collected an Erick Torres pass, scampered along the endline and slotted home the winner just after the half-hour. The home side held out to claim a third win in four attempts and climb out of the Western Conference cellar on the final day. MLS is expected to fold the franchise and sell the rights to a second Los Angeles club to new investors before the start of next season.
Vancouver 1 – Colorado 0
Kendall Waston delivered the second playoff berth in the Whitecaps’ MLS tenure with a towering header at B.C. Place. Vancouver entered the final game on Saturday night needing a win to overhaul Portland and secure fifth place in the Western Conference. To took 70 minutes, but the home side finally got the goal required to seal a playoff spot. Waston made a timely run to the near post and waded through a raft of bodies at the near post to head home Pedro Morales’ corner kick. David Ousted made a late save on Gabriel Torres to ensure the Whitecaps emerged victorious from the must-win encounter. Carl Robinson’s side will travel to Frisco to face FC Dallas in the Knockout Round on Wednesday.
FC Dallas 0 – Portland 2
Portland applied ultimately futile pressure on the Whitecaps and sent FCD into the Knockout Round with a victory in Frisco. Darlington Nagbe registered his first goal of the season with a deflected effort shortly before halftime. Maximiliano Urruti climbed off the bench and secured the points with the second inside the final 10 minutes. The triumph kept the Timbers alive until Vancouver defeated Colorado, but their postseason quest fell short in the end. FCD will now face the Whitecaps at Toyota Stadium on Wednesday.
Seattle 2 – LA Galaxy 0 – full match report
Sounders FC claimed its first Supporters’ Shield with a late show at CenturyLink Field. Marco Pappa climbed off the bench in the final half-hour and struck twice to propel Seattle to the win required to secure top spot in the Western Conference and ensure homefield advantage throughout the MLS Cup playoffs. Seattle will face the winner of the Knockout Round match in the Western Conference semifinals, while the Galaxy will play Real Salt Lake in a series scheduled to start next Saturday.
New England 1 – Toronto FC 0
Lee Nguyen completed his case for MVP with the winner over TFC at Gillette Stadium. Nguyen collected a Chris Tierney pass and tucked away his 18th goal of the season to decide the affair. New England will host the second leg of their Eastern Conference semifinal tie against Columbus, New York or Sporting Kansas City on Nov. 9.
Montréal 1 – D.C. United 0
Marco Di Vaio bid adieu to the Impact in style with a goal in his final match at Stade Saputo. Di Vaio raced in behind and sumptuously tucked home the opener after 26 minutes to complete his MLS account. Fabian Espindola snatched an equalizer for United four minutes from time to lift the visitors to a point. United will now wait to learn its opposition in the Eastern Conference semifinals.
Chicago 2 – Houston 1
Florent Sinama Pongolle struck in second-half stoppage time to give the Fire a season-ending victory at Toyota Park on Friday. Houston took the lead through Omar Cummings after 18 minutes, but Jeff Larentowicz equalized from the spot just after the hour. This affair between two sides planning for 2015 appeared destined for a stalemate until Sinama Pongolle intervened with a near-post header to snatch all three points at the death.