Sporting Kansas City moved into third place in the Western Conference while Toronto FC closed in on its first-ever playoff berth in a busy MLS Saturday.
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Krisztian Nemeth scored in the 83rd minute and Sporting Kansas City beat the Portland Timbers 1–0 on Saturday night with both teams jockeying for playoff position.
Kansas City (13-9-9) moved up into the third place in the Western Conference standings, while Portland (12-11-8) fell into a tie for sixth with San Jose — which holds the tiebreaker for the final playoff spot. The Timbers have three games left in the regular season and the Earthquakes have two.
The Earthquakes and the Vancouver Whitecaps played to a 1–all draw Saturday night.
Nemeth dribbled past three defenders and beat Timbers’ goalkeeper Adam Kawarasey for the lone goal. The sellout crowd at Providence Park booed loudly when the match was final.
WHITECAPS 1, EARTHQUAKES 1, TIE
SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) — Chris Wondolowski scored in the 62nd minute, and San Jose held off Vancouver.
The Earthquakes improved to 12-12-8. The Whitecaps (15-12-4) remained in second place and moved one point behind the conference-leading Los Angeles Galaxy.
Vancouver goalkeeper David Ousted saved Cordell Cat’s narrow-angle shot but muffed it away and Wondolowski punched home the loose ball for his 16th goal of the season.
Cristian Techera opened the scoring in the 39th minute with a shot from the middle of the box that deflected off defender Shaun Francis’s foot and looped over goalkeeper David Bingham.
TORONTO FC 3, UNION 1
TORONTO (AP) — Sebastian Giovinco and Jozy Altidore scored and Toronto FC beat the Philadelphia Union 3–1 on Saturday to close in on the first playoff berth in franchise history.
Toronto improved to 14-13-4. Philadelphia (9-16-7) was eliminated from playoff contention.
Giovinco, on his third free kick of the first half, converted in the 28th minute from the edge of the penalty box when his shot deflected off Raymon Gaddis in the wall and looped high into the far corner of the goal. Giovinco has 21 goals this season.
Altidore scored in the 63rd, fighting off a defender to tap the ball in for his 12th of the season.
Toronto-born defender Steven Vitoria scored for Philadelphia in the 66th minute. Philadelphia had an own goal in stoppage time when Richie Marquez put Jonathan Osorio’s cross into the net.
RED BULLS 2, CREW 1
HARRISON, N.J. (AP) — Bradley Wright-Phillips scored the go-ahead goal in the first half and New York held on to beat Columbus.
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’s hands in the eighth minute.
Lloyd Sam tied it three minutes later. Sacha Kljestan assisted on the goal.
ORLANDO CITY 2, IMPACT 1
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Seb Hines scored on a volley in the 80th minute and Orlando City avoided elimination from the playoff race with a victory over Montreal.
Orlando City (11-13-8) entered the game in seventh place, needing at least a tie to remain in the Eastern Conference playoff race. It won its fourth straight and has two games remaining in the season.
Montreal (12-12-6) would have clinched a playoff berth with a win, but retained its hold of sixth place and the final playoff position with four games to go.
Cyle Larin opened the scoring for Orlando in the 33rd minute, extending his rookie scoring record to 15 goals. Dominic Oduro tied it in the 43rd minute with a loose-ball finish.
FIRE 3, REVOLUTION 1
BRIDGEVIEW, Ill. (AP) — David Accam and Harry Shipp scored eight minutes apart in Chicago’s three-goal second half and the Fire beat New England to deny the Revolution a chance to clinch a playoff spot.
New England (13-10-8) took a 1–0 lead in the first half when Chris Tierney fired a beautiful cross from just inside the sideline to the right of Chicago keeper Jon Busch, finding Juan Agudelo in front of the goal mouth for the header in the 31st minute. Accam found open space in the penalty area and fired a right-footed shot past New England keeper Bobby Shuttleworth to even the score in the 51st minute, and Shipp booted home the go-ahead goal eight minutes later, threading a shot between Shuttleworth's legs.
Chicago (7-18-6) snapped a five-match losing streak.