Orlando City tops Columbus 2-1, earns final playoff berth in East

Orlando will face CF Montreal in round one of the playoffs on Sunday, Oct. 16 at 8 p.m.

Exploria Stadium in Orlando (WKMG 2020)

ORLANDO, Fla. – Facundo Torres scored on a penalty kick in the 84th minute and Orlando City grabbed the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference with a 2-1 victory over the Columbus Crew on Sunday.

Orlando City (14-14-6) beat Columbus (10-8-16) for the seventh time in the last eight meetings. Orlando City went 9-8-0 at home this season. The only other team to finish a season without a draw at home, excluding the shortened 2020 season, was the 2002 New England Revolution.

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Columbus needed a win or a tie to advance. The club set a MLS record by dropping 11 points in the 90th minute or later this season — topping the previous mark by three points.

Derrick Etienne staked the Crew to a 1-0 lead with a goal in the 38th minute. It was Etienne's 10th goal of the season, tying Lucas Zelarayán for the team lead.

Júnior Urso's sixth goal of the season pulled Orlando City even in the 56th minute, setting the stage for Torres' match winner. A handball call on the Crew's Milos Degenek led to the penalty kick. It was Torres' ninth goal, second on the team to Ercan Kara's 11.

Pedro Gallese made five saves for Orlando City. Eloy Room stopped two shots for Columbus.

Orlando have made the postseason three years in a row, barely scraping in this year with the dramatic decision-day win.

The Lions will face the number two seed CF Montréal on the road in their first round playoff matchup on Sunday, Oct. 16 at 8 p.m.

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More AP MLS: https://apnews.com/hub/major-league-soccer and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports


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About the Authors:

Jacob joined ClickOrlando.com in 2022. He spent 19 years at the Orlando Sentinel, mostly as a photojournalist and video journalist, before joining Spectrum News 13 as a web editor and digital journalist in 2021.