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07 June 12:09 am
Federico Higuaín took three shots on goal tonight, but it only took one blast to cut Montreal’s lead in half. Most impressively, Columbus Crew SC was down by two, but a relentless effort led to Pipa’s goal in the 91st minute.
We definitely had our chances with 20 attempts, 13 of which came in the second half. Kei Kamara recorded 10 shots of his own, with one hitting the post and few tipped over the crossbar by Montreal goalkeeper, Evan Bush.
Midfielder Ethan Finlay also contributed to our attack, hustling down the wing, creating dynamic give-and-go advancements with Hector Jimenez, slotting balls in the box, hitting crosses back post and notching a shot.
Waylon Francis and Tony Tchani each recorded a shot, while Mohammed Saeid hit two. However, his defense stood out tonight winning several tackles in the middle of the field, and sliding in front of an Ignacio Piatti shot inside the box in the 28th minute.
Defending the Impact was tough as the majority of their offense came on counterattacks. Steve Clark registered four saves, but a jumble in the box led to a goal by Maxim Tissot in the 55th minute. In the 79th minute, an unlucky bounce led to a second Impact goal by Andrés Romero off of a counterattack.
Captain Michael Parkhurst emphasized that we have plenty of time left to bounce back, as this was only our second loss at home this season.
“There’s a lot of season left and we need to stay positive and get back to working hard,” said Parkhurst.
Crew SC has a week to prepare for our next match as we host the LA Galaxy on Saturday, June 13 at 7:30 p.m. 
06 June 11:08 pm

Scoring chances came in waves and in many different forms for Columbus Crew SC on Saturday night. The club registered 20 shots and earned 10 corner kicks, ramping up the pressure on Montreal goalkeeper Evan Bush and his defense.

That defense eventually conceded a goal to Federico Higuaín in the 91st minute, but Montreal's two second-half scores guided it to a 2-1 win at MAPFRE Stadium.

Each goal came to be in very different fashions, so examine each one further to see how they came to fruition.

Goal #1 – Maxim Tissot breaks the tie

Andrés Romero make a nice run from midfield to spread things out and allows Tissot to run free along the left side. Hector Jimenez makes a play on the ball before Tissot can get to it, but the ball falling directly in-between backpedaling defenders Michael Parkhurst and Tyson Wahl allows Jack McLnerney to sprint in and put the ball on goal. Tissot, who is left unmarked after Parkhurst lunges after McInerney’s shot, is in the right place at the right time to put the rebound away.

Goal #2 – Romero capitalizes on the counterattack

Crew SC had committed several men forward in response to a free kick from about 30 yards out. When Jimenez’s cross into the box takes a wicked bounce back into the middle of the field, it creates a perfect storm for a counterattack. Romero and Ignacio Piatti had sprung ahead of nine Crew SC players, leaving only Waylon Francis to stand in their way. Romero receives the ball at the edge of the box and finesses it past a sprawling Steve Clark.

Goal #3 – Higuaín jumps on the rebound

Higuaín becomes unmarked after speeding past a jogging Patrice Bernier while the ball is in the air. Whether or not Aaron Schoenfeld meant to get the ball to Higuaín, as opposed to putting it on goal or getting it to Kamara, it landed in the perfect spot in between every Montreal defender. From there, Higuaín had plenty of space to take a touch, aim, and fire away.

04 June 1:43 pm

The United States Women’s National Team will embark on a quest for a third World Cup trophy this week in Canada. The perennial power has shined in venues all over the world, but much like its male counterparts, the USWNT has found success in Columbus, Ohio.

Despite an unfavorable World Cup draw in 2003 – one that found them pitted in the “Group of Death” with Sweden, Nigeria, and North Korea – the United States came out on top with three wins, with the last victory coming at the hands of then up and coming women’s soccer power North Korea in Columbus, Ohio.

A crowd of 22,828 people witnessed a 3-0 U.S. victory on September 28, 2003, as the Red, White and Blue did well to handle a North Korea team that outscored its opponents 50-3 during the qualifying stages. Some analysts even considered North Korea a dark-horse candidate to win the Women’s World Cup.

That result at MAPFRE Stadium sent the U.S. on to Foxborough and then Portland for the knockout stages. The U.S. eventually won the bronze medal-- its fourth visit to the podium in as many World Cups.

Most recently, the U.S. Women’s Team last played at MAPFRE Stadium in May of 2013, as a 1-1 draw against New Zealand improved its record in Columbus to 4-1-1, continuing the trend of Columbus representing a fortress of sorts for U.S soccer.

Though this year’s World Cup takes place elsewhere this time around, we'll be here cheering them on and wishing them all the best from Columbus, when the U.S. Women’s Team kicks off against Australia on Monday, June 8 at 7:30 p.m. ET.

03 June 10:32 pm

Emanuel Pogatetz heads the ball past Phildelphia Union's Andrew Wenger in Crew SC's 3-0 loss at PPL Park.

Philadelphia’s May schedule featured five matches against four of the League’s premier teams. Playing better teams can result in a higher level of play, regardless of the outcome, and that effort carried into Wednesday night’s match against Columbus Crew SC (4-5-4.)

Goals from Vincent Noguiera and Sebastien Le Toux came only six minutes apart from one another early in the second half. That put Philadelphia (4-8-3) up 3-0, where it would remain for the duration of the match.

Crew SC Sporting Director and Head Coach Gregg Berhalter said Philadelphia's performance was the best play he's seen from them.

"Well, I think the starting point is the Philadelphia Union played an outstanding game," said Berhalter. "When you look at how effective they were and how they were winning challenges and moving the ball, and the competitive desire to win the game, it was outstanding. I think that’s the best I have seen Philly play."

On paper, the clubs did not differ drastically. In stats such as possession, shots, crosses, tackles won, and clearances, the two sides were nearly identical. Columbus and Philadelphia generated only seven on-target shots cumulatively, not including a first half Ethan Finlay shot that missed the post by inches. But Philadelphia’s flurry within the middle 30 minutes of the match created the right opportunities and the Union executed well.

As for Crew SC, a slightly altered starting line-up, highlighted by the absence of captain Michael Parkhurst, proved to be a tough obstacle to overcome, especially with the club playing another road match just four days prior. Wednesday’s match marked the fourth match in 13 days, including last week’s international friendly against Valencia CF, making it difficult to find time for a new unit to mesh.

Chad Barson accepted the challenges, made several strong, defensive tackles throughout the match, and reflected on his team's performance afterward.

"Definitely not the result we wanted," said Barson. "Three games in a short amount of time all against eastern conference teams, so obviously very important games for us and it’s an opportunity, if you get results, to move up in the standings. I think overall it wasn’t terrible, but just a few plays that kind of dug us a hole and it was too difficult to dig ourselves out of."

Teammate Aaron Schoenfeld, made his first start of the season, playing up top and registering a shot on goal tonight. Defender Sergio Campbell also got his first taste of MLS action, starting in the place of the aforementioned Parkhurst. Schoenfeld agreed with Barson on their team's play.

"I think it just wasn’t our day today. We threw away a couple of chances early, so if we take one of those, it changes the game up," said Schoenfeld. "Once they score that goal, they have some confidence behind them and start moving the ball a lot better. On any given day in this league, any team can win, which is the good thing about this league – there’s very little disparity between the teams. So if you come out flat, you’re going to get punished."

Barson is also grateful for the opportunity to play five matches in 16 days. 

"That’s the good thing about having so many games in a short amount of time," said Barson. "You forget the previous result and move onto the next one and make sure that you recover physically and mentally and put everything towards the next game."

One of the bright spots for the Black & Gold tonight was Mohammed Saeid establishing himself as the League’s second-most accurate passer with a passing percentage of 89.5 percent. The ranking includes only players who have registered at least 200 passes.

Another quick turnaround lies ahead for Crew SC, but the scene will change to familiar surroundings when the Black & Gold welcome the Montreal Impact to MAPFRE Stadium on Saturday at 7:30 p.m.