Columbus Crew SC 2, Toronto FC 1 | 2017 MLS Match Recap

Columbus Crew SC continued their hot start to the 2017 season at the expense of previously-unbeaten Toronto FC, and vaulted back atop the Eastern Conference standings in the process.

Jozy Altidore's corner-kick header from outside the box staked the Reds to a 1-0 lead in the 21st minute, but Federico Higuain -- back from an ankle knock that sidelined him for a week -- had a pair of secondary assists as Columbus came back to win 2-1 on Saturday night in the first match of the Trillium Cup series.

Ola Kamara equalized with a tap-in in the 37th minute, and Justin Meram connected with a side-footer from close range in the 44th for the match-winner.

Despite Toronto's previously-unbeaten mark, Saturday night's result meant that the Reds -- who had defender Drew Moor sidelined by a heart condition this week -- have won just once (1-1-4) in six matches this year, after their runner-up finish in the 2016 MLS Cup playoffs.

Goals

  • 21' - TOR - Jozy Altidore (WATCH)
  • 37' - CLB - Ola Kamara (WATCH)
  • 44' - CLB - Justin Meram (WATCH)

Three Things

  1. HANSEN SOLID IN FIRST START: Rookie winger Niko Hansen, the ninth overall pick in the 2017 MLS SuperDraft, earned his first spot in the Crew SC XI this year – and made a case for another starting nod with his play during a stint that lasted just under an hour. Hansen's biggest contribution came in the 37th minute, when he took a nice ball down the right side from Federico Higuain and slid a pass across the face of goal for Ola Kamara's equalizing tap-in.
  2. LOCKING IT DOWN: Columbus struggled last year to avoid conceding second-half goals, but 2017 has been another story entirely. Saturday night's victory over Toronto FC marked the fifth straight match for Crew SC without a goal given up in the second 45 minutes.
  3. SEBA OFF THE SCORESHEET, AGAIN: Sebastian Giovinco's frustrating 2017 season continues apace. The diminutive TFC striker, who racked up 39 total regular-season goals and 31 assists across his first two years in the league, has found the net just once in five appearances this season and has yet to record an assist.

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