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VANCOUVER — An all-Canadian soccer battle erupted in a flurry of goals and a pair of red cards in Vancouver on Sunday before the Montreal Impact walked away with 4-2 victory over the Whitecaps.
Saphir Taider had a goal and two assists for the Impact (5-4-1), while Orji Okwonkwo and Samuel Piette each added a goal and a helper. Romell Quioto rounded out the scoring for Montreal.
Theo Bair scored for the Whitecaps (3-7-0), who also got an own goal from Montreal’s Rudy Camacho.
Vancouver’s Lucas Cavallini was ejected from the match in the 57th minute after receiving his second yellow card of the game.
Montreal’s side was also cut to 10 players in the 72nd minute when midfielder Emmanuel Maciel was sent off.
The victory keeps the Impact’s hopes of winning the round-robin portion of this year’s Canadian Championships alive.
Montreal will now need to beat Vancouver again on Wednesday to tie Toronto in total wins for the tournament. A tiebreaker would be decided on goals.
Bair opened the scoring early on Sunday, collecting a nice ball from David Milinkovic in the eighth minute and going for a run down the sideline before beating Camacho and Luis Binks on the way. The young ‘Caps forward beat Impact ‘keeper Clement Diop with a long shot from outside the box that found the bottom left corner of the net.
Impact forward Romell Quioto took a tough-angle shot from the goal line, sending the ball careening off the post and drawing Hasal across. The rebound bounced off Taider to Okwonkwo, who hammered a shot into the empty net.
Montreal began to pick up steam as the half drew to a close, dominating possession and keeping Vancouver on its heels.
The pressure caused Hasal to make a costly mistake in injury time. The young ‘keeper dove to make a save on Quioto, but took out Honduran forward inside the box, awarding the Impact a penalty kick.
The Impact came out of the locker room with fire, continuing to dominate play. Okwonkwo got a nice ball to Taider in the 51st minute, and Taider slipped a pass to Piette directly in front of the Vancouver net. The Canadian midfielder popped a shot in for his first-ever MLS goal.
The tense atmosphere erupted soon after. Vancouver’s Cavallini drove hard toward the Montreal net, appearing to kick Diop in the head en route. He received a yellow card for the play, his second of the game.
A scrum quickly broke out near the Impact net, with several players pushing and shoving. Cavallini and Diop seemed close to trading blows before they were separated by teammates.
The Impact capitalized on the high energy quickly, with Quioto scoring to put Montreal up 4-1.
Vancouver got one back five minutes later when Cristian Gutierrez took a long shot at the Montreal net. The ball bounced off Camacho, cutting the Impact’s lead to two.
Montreal lost its man advantage in the 70th minute when midfielder Maciel took out Vancouver’s Cristian Dajome with a nasty tackle mid-field. He was shown the yellow card, but after video review, he was given a red and tossed from the game.
Despite the roof remaining closed at BC Place, the air inside the stadium was hazy with smoke from wildfires burning south of the border. The ‘Caps abbreviated their training session on Saturday because of the smoke.
Referee Pierre-Luc Lauziere called for a hydration breaks in the game’s 30th and 76th minutes Sunday due to the air quality.
NOTES: David Milinkovic and Michael Baldisimo had assists for Vancouver … Zachary Brault-Guillard had an assist for Montreal.
Vancouver Whitecaps FC, Montreal Impact, MLS, Canadian Championship
Actu monde – CA – Montreal Impact score feisty 4-2 victory over Vancouver Whitecaps