Wright-Phillips leads New York past Toronto, 3-1
HARRISON, New Jersey (AP) — Bradley Wright-Phillips scored his MLS-leading 25th goal of the season to help the New York Red Bulls beat Toronto FC 3-1 in Major League Soccer on Saturday night.
Wright-Phillips is two goals away from equaling the MLS single record — with two games to play.
New York is fourth in the Eastern Conference, while sixth-place Toronto is six points back of Columbus for the final Eastern Conference playoff spot. New York will clinch its playoff berth if the seventh-placed Houston Dynamo fails to beat leaders D.C. United on Sunday.
New York scored all three goals in the first half. Wright-Phillips got his in the 26th minute when he slotted home Kosuke Kimura’s cross. In the 35th minute, Ruben Bover Izquierdo tracked down a rebound and slid in his first MLS goal. Dax McCarty redirected a deflected shot in the 44th minute.
Toronto’s Jonathan Osorio tapped in Justin Morrow’s cross in the 55th minute but the fight back stalled when Nick Hagglund received a red card in the 86th minute for a rough challenge.
At Montreal, Lee Nguyen scored in the 69th minute to give the New England Revolution the point they needed to clinch an Eastern Conference playoff spot in a 2-2 draw with the Montreal Impact.
Kelyn Rowe also scored for New England which moved ahead of Sporting Kansas City into second place in the East. Marco Di Vaio scored twice for Montreal which has already been eliminated from playoff contention.
Nguyen pulled the Revolution level with a chip shot from the edge of the area that appeared to go off defender Calum Mallace’s foot and drop behind goalkeeper Evan Bush. Nguyen has 15 goals this season.
At Chester, Pennsylvania, Ethan Finlay, Justin Meram and Jairo Arrieta scored in a late 5-minute span to give the Columbus Crew a 3-2 comeback victory over the Philadelphia Union.
Finlay started the flurry in the 78th minute with a one-timer off Hector Jimenez’s cross. A minute later, Meram weaved through the defense to even the score, and Arrieta flicked the winner past the goalkeeper in the 82nd.
Following a scoreless first half, Danny Cruz opened the scoring for the Union in the 68th minute and Andrew Wenger extended the lead with another goal in the 75th.
Columbus solidified their hold on the fifth-and-final MLS playoff position, extending their lead to six points over Toronto FC, the nearest challenger, while Philadelphia is eliminated.
Elsewhere, Ned Grabavoy and Sebastian Velasquez scored first-half goals and Real Salt Lake clinched its seventh consecutive playoff berth, beating the San Jose Earthquakes 2-0.
Chivas USA defeated the Colorado Rapids 2-1 on a 85th minute goal from Felix Borja.