MLS Snapshots: Toronto FC 3-0 Crew SC | Orlando City 3-1 NE Revs (video)

AP Photo/John Raoux

The game in 100 words (or less): It’s the second half of the season, and rather than falling away from the pack, Toronto FC are making their move in an upward fashion as we close out July and head into August. With Sunday’s 3-0 victory over an officially floundering Columbus Crew SC side, the fighting Giovincos Reds have gone third in the Eastern Conference, just two and six points back of the second- and first-place New York Red Bulls and New York City FC, respectively, with two games in hand on each. Sebastian Giovinco picked up another goal and two assists on the night, bringing his 2016 totals to 12 and 9. He’s the odds-on favorite to become the first player in league history to win back-to-back MVP awards. Jozy Altidore returned to the scoresheet in league play for the first time since the final day of the 2015 season, and Greg Vanney’s side delivered just their clean sheet of the summer months. Crew SC, meanwhile, are just a point off the bottom of the league eight short months after appearing in MLS Cup 2015.

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Three moments that mattered 

8′ — Giovinco uses Endoh as a deflector for 1-0 — So maybe he didn’t mean to do it, but you wouldn’t put it past Giovinco, would you? Either way, assist to Giovinco; goal to Tsubasa Endoh.

24′ — Giovinco gets one that can’t be taken away — No doubt about to whom to credit this one. Outside-of-the-foot beauty.

87′ — Altidore scores a deflected goal of his own — Welcome back, Jozy. If you had July 31 in the “when will Jozy score his first goal of 2016?” pool, you’re a winner.

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Man of the match: Sebastian Giovinco

Goalscorers: Endoh (8′), Giovinco (24′), Altidore (87′)

The game in 100 words (or less): The Jason Kreis era is off and running for Orlando City SC, and to great effect with a 3-1 home victory over the New England Revolution on Sunday. Kevin Molino, who missed the majority of 2015 after tearing his ACL early in the season, bagged two goals and an assist, quietly bringing his 2016 totals 9 and 8. The Trinidadian probably isn’t on your radar yet, but that should be changing in short order. Cyle Larin netted for the 11th time this season (tied for second-most in MLS), and the Lions suddenly find themselves level on points with the Revs for the sixth and final playoff place. With a game in hand, plus 12 more still to play, a buoyed Orlando City side should put plenty of fear into the likes of New England and the suddenly reeling Philadelphia Union.

[ MORE: Previewing the rest of the MLS weekend ]

Three Four moments that mattered 

19′ — Kamara races past three to make it 1-0 — That’s a lot of open space for a player with Kamara’s speed and nose for goal. If that’s how you want to play it, Lions.

46′ — Larin beats Shuttleworth for 1-1 — When you talk about complete forwards, you must mention Larin. Right foot, left foot, head … it doesn’t matter.

64′ — Molino heads the cross from Shea to take the lead — Brek Shea, off the right flank, floated the cross for Molino, who made no mistake with his header.

81′ — Molino fires past Shuttleworth for some insurance — When Kaka is serving them up like this, it would be rude not to score.

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Man of the match: Kevin Molino

Goalscorers: Kamara (19′), Larin (46′), Molino (64′, 81′)