Patrice Bernier scored on a penalty kick in the 89th minute and the Montreal Impact ended a three-game losing streak with a 2-1 victory over the Columbus Crew on Sunday night.
Bernier hesitated before putting his shot past Columbus goalkeeper Andy Gruenebaum to the delight of the Saputo Stadium crowd.
Zarek Valentin drew Montreal even with the tying goal in the 78th minute. Valentin scored on a 15-metre shot from the right side draw the Impact 14 minutes after Columbus took a 1-0 lead.
Milan Mirosevic broke the scoreless draw 64 minutes in. The Crew striker cut across to head in Nemanja Vukovich’s left-footed corner kick off Montreal goalkeeper Donovan Ricketts hand and into the right side of the net.
Impact striker Marco Di Vaio began Valentin’s scoring play, setting up Sanna Nyassi who fed a pass to his right to Valentin. his shot beat Columbus goalkeeper Andy Gruenebaum into the right side of the net.
Gruenebaum made a diving save on Jeb Brovsky’s long kick in the 76th minute.
It was the teams’ second meeting. Gruenebaum recorded a shutout and Mirosevic and Olman Vargas scored in the Crew’s 2-0 home win over Montreal on March 24.
The Impact played most of that game one man short after Brovsky was shown a red card and sent off 19 minutes in for elbowing Mirosevic in the back of the head.
Lamar Neagle headed the ball just wide of the left post off Di Vaio’s deft set-up early in the second half. The veteran Italian striker created the scoring opportunity 49 minutes in when he floated a pass to Neagle over defender Josh Williams.
Di Vaio created another chance moments later when he sent in Sanna Nyassi, whose shot was blocked by Gruenebaum.
Crew captain Chad Marshall returned after missing eight games because of a concussion. Columbus won four and lost three without Marshall, who had not played since he was hit on the head by a ball in practice on May 4.
The Impact were without captain Davy Arnaud and midfielder Felipe Martins. Both players served one-game suspensions after each received his fifth yellow card of the season in Wednesday night’s 3-1 loss to Sporting Kansas City.
Bernier wore the captain’s armband for the Impact in Arnaud’s absence.
Nyassi will be suspended for Montreal’s next game, Saturday in Philadelphia. Nyassi was shown his fifth yellow card of the season for a hard tackle late in the first half.
Columbus midfielder Tony Tchani was shown a yellow card by referee Matthew Foerster in the 39th minute for kicking the ball into the stands.