Forward Brian White scored once and played a role in a Minnesota United FC own goal as the Vancouver Whitecaps used a 2-1 victory to climb into a Major League Soccer playoff spot Wednesday night.
White was part of a pretty three-way passing play that put Vancouver ahead by two in the 64th minute.
Forward Cristian Dajome started the play just outside the Minnesota box.
He passed to forward Ryan Gauld who dished to White who buried the shot for his team-leading 12th of the season.
The goal came just minutes after Minnesota’s Adrien Hunou came close to tying the match when his shot at an empty net hit the post.
Fanendo Adi made things interesting scoring for Minnesota in extra time.
The Whitecaps (12-9-11) now have 47 point and leapfrogged over three teams into fifth spot in Major League Soccer’s tight Western Conference.
Minnesota (12-11-9) drop below the playoff line into eighth place, tied with Real Salt Lake with 45 points.
After stumbling early in the season the Whitecaps have found their legs. The Caps are 10-2-8 in their last 20 games. Since returning to BC Place Stadium on Aug. 21 after playing the first part of the season in Sandy, Utah, due to COVID-19 protocols, they are 7-1-0 at home.
Minnesota United FC dropped to 3-7-6 on the road.
Vancouver started the evening eighth in the Western Conference, one spot out of a playoff spot. Minnesota was sixth.
The Whitecaps took a 1-0 lead in the dying seconds of the first half.
White got behind the Minnesota defence to track down a long ball launched by veteran midfielder Russell Teibert from deep in the Vancouver zone. Goalkeeper Tyler Miller came out to challenge on the play but White chested the ball past him. It hit defender Michael Boxall and rolled into the net.
Both teams had opportunities during the opening half.
Minnesota forward Franco Fragapane took a left-footed shot from the side of the box that Vancouver goalkeeper Maxime Crepeau stopped. Crepeau also leaped into the air to grab a corner kick.
Early in the game Vancouver midfielder Leonard Owusu had a kick from distance that drifted wide. Dajome also headed a shot inside the box that hit the side of the net.
The Whitecaps’ playoff future could be decided in the final game of the season Nov. 7 at home against Seattle. The Caps last home loss was a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Portland on Sept. 10. . Vancouver played without midfielder Caio Alexandre (left foot, fifth metatarsal fracture), forward Tosaint Ricketts (right calf strain) and defender Andy Rose (left calf strain). Minnesota’s last road win was Aug. 28, a 2-1 victory at Houston.