Second-half surge carries Minnesota United past Whitecaps
The Loons won their third straight, scoring three goals in each contest
VANCOUVER — Minnesota United erupted for three goals in 17 minutes late in the second half to rally for a 3-1 win against the host Vancouver Whitecaps on Friday.
Vancouver (7-9-3, 24 points) lost for the first time in four games after two wins and a draw.
Lucas Cavallani, the Whitecaps' leading scorer, came on as a substitute in the 63rd minute and made it 1-0 three minutes later.
Loons defender Kemar Lawrence tied in the 71st minute. Luis Amarilla gave Minnesota (8-8-3, 27 points) the lead in the 84th minute, and Franco Fragapane added an insurance tally four minutes later as the Loons won their third straight, scoring three goals in each contest.
Amarilla broke the tie with a laser from 25 yards after a turnover. Fragapane took a pass from Dayne St. Clair and scored his second goal of the season.
The teams not only entered with identical records but they were even in the all-time series at 3-3-3.
A languid first half reflected that closeness with neither side able to establish dominance or dangerous chances until Minnesota made several forays into the box in the final minute.
Wil Trapp laced an 18-yard strike that forced Vancouver goalkeeper Cody Cropper to dive to his right for his lone save in the opening 45 minutes. After a Minnesota corner, Trapp and Emanuel Reynoso had shots blocked.
The breakthrough goal came when Cavallini scored his sixth goal on a knockdown header from 8 yards. Pedro Vite had the first primary assist with a cross from the right flank after taking a setup pass from Ryan Raposo.
The Whitecaps had visions of a fourth straight shutout, but those were dashed on a well-crafted play by Minnesota. Reynoso passed to D.J. Taylor on the right side, and his service found Lawrence at the far post to make it 1-1.
Each team plays Wednesday when Vancouver plays at FC Cincinnati while the Loons host Sporting Kansas City.
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