Red Bulls beat Crew 2-1, extend lead in Eastern Conference

HARRISON, N.J. (AP) Bradley Wright-Phillips scored the go-ahead goal in the first half and the New York Red Bulls held on to beat the Columbus Crew 2-1 on Saturday night.

The playoff-bound Red Bulls (15-9-6) have a three-point lead over D.C. United in the Eastern Conference with four games to play. Despite consecutive losses, the Crew (13-11-8) clinched a playoff spot with Orlando City beating the Montreal 2-1.

Crew goalkeeper Steve Clark tried to kick the ball to Harrison Afful, but it was intercepted by a charging Connor Lade. Lade then crossed the ball to Wright-Phillips, who scored off a header in the 21st minute for his 15th goal of the season.

The Crew’s Justin Meram split five defenders, and floated his shot just off defender Damien Perrinelle’s head and through goalkeeper Luis Robles’ hands in the eighth minute.

Lloyd Sam tied it 3 minutes later. Sacha Kljestan assisted on the goal.