Impact extend home win streak to 8, beat Red Bulls in opener

Ignacio Piatti scored his third of the season to lead the Impact to a 3-0 victory over the visiting New York Red Bulls in Montreal's Major League Soccer home opener at Olympic Stadium on Saturday.

Montreal downs New York for 1st time since March 2013

The Impact's Ignacio Piatti, left, challenges the Red Bulls' Karl Ouimette during first-half MLS action in Montreal on Saturday. The Impact prevailed 3-0 at Olympic Stadium to extend its home win streak to eight games. Piatti's goal, his league-leading third of the young season, came in the 71st minute. Dominic Oduro also scored for 2-0-0 Montreal in the 58th minute, the fifth of his career versus New York. (Graham Hughes/Canadian Press)

Impact goalkeeper Evan Bush made an unorthodox save to lead his team to victory.

The Impact beat the visiting New York Red Bulls 3-0 in Montreal's Major League Soccer home opener at Olympic Stadium on Saturday, and a key save by Bush kept Montreal alive late in the game.

With the Impact leading 1-0 in the 71st minute, New York's Felipe hit striker Bradley Wright-Phillips with a pass on the edge of the box. Wright-Phillips was alone in front of goal following an acrobatic first touch, and it looked like the Red Bulls would equalize.

But Bush charged out of his net and stopped the left-footed strike with his neck, to the delight of the 27,545 fans in the stands.

"It was a bobbling ball and Wright-Phillips was in a good spot," said Bush, who made three saves for his first clean sheet of the season. "I tried to make myself big and stay high. It hit me in the throat, and I'm not sure how the ball got to where it did.

"That was definitely a turning point."

That was huge. It literally led directly to our second goal. It's the difference between 1-1 and 2-0.- Impact midfielder Harry Shipp on Evan Bush's 2nd-half save

Immediately after the save, Montreal stormed down the pitch on the counter-attack. A pass by Donna Toia sent Ignacio Piatti in all alone on 'keeper Luis Robles, with the Argentine scoring his league-leading third goal of the year.

"That was huge," said midfielder Harry Shipp of Bush's save. "It literally led directly to our second goal. It's the difference between 1-1 and 2-0."

Added coach Mauro Biello: "Big players come up in big moments, and Evan Bush came up in a big moment today for us."

Finishing touch

Montreal (2-0-0) added its third of the game when substitute Anthony Jackson-Hamel beat Robles in the dying seconds of stoppage time.

The Impact won their last eight home games in MLS, beating New York for the first time since March 23, 2013.

The Red Bulls (0-2-0), which lost their season opener 2-0 against Toronto FC, have yet to score a goal this year.

A giveaway by the Red Bulls led to the Impact's first of the game in the 58th minute.

Defender Gideon Baah's clearance up the pitch was intercepted by substitute Johan Venegas, who had come into the match just seconds earlier. Venegas then fed Dominic Oduro in the box and the Impact striker made no mistake from 10 yards out.

"It cost us," said Red Bulls coach Jesse Marsch of Baah's error. "In some ways then our mentality wasn't strong enough. That certainly was a monumental moment in the game.

"We gave away goals. That's a recipe for losses."

The Impact beat the Vancouver Whitecaps 3-2 in their season opener last week, with Piatti scoring twice for Montreal.

Biello made just one change to the starting lineup that won in Vancouver, as Calum Mallace replaced Marco Donadel (sore leg) in the midfield.

The Impact's Didier Drogba (sore knee) was not in the lineup as he is currently training in Sacramento, Calif.

Also absent for Montreal were Andres Romero (knee), Patrice Bernier (hamstring) and Cameron Porter (hamstring).


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