Lucas Zelarayan foiled New York City FC with another free-kick goal to lead the host Columbus Crew to a 2-1 victory on Saturday.
Zelarayan broke a 1-1 tie in the 62nd minute and Eloy Room made six saves as the Crew (5-3-5, 20 points) won for the first time after a loss and three ties in their previous four games.
Darlington Nagbe gave the Crew a 1-0 lead late in the first half before Jesus Medina tied it for New York City (5-5-2) early in the second. NYC lost its second straight despite a 21-6 shot advantage.
Zelarayan stunned New York City on May 22 with free-kick goals in the 82nd and 95th minutes to turn defeat into a 2-1 road victory.
He was it again in the Crew’s second match at Lower.com Field. The 19,113 fans rose after Pedro Santos was fouled 22 yards out. Zelarayan stepped up and targeted the upper left corner.
Luis Barraza, playing his second career match because Sean Johnson is with the U.S. men’s national team at the CONCACAF Gold Cup, dove to his right and got a touch on the ball but could not prevent Zelarayan’s fourth free-kick goal of the season to set a Crew record.
The score came after Medina notched his sixth goal in the 47th minute to make it 1-1.
Columbus had two opportunities for clearances but the ball landed on the left foot of Medina and he wasted no time scoring for the first time since May 29 to counter Nagbe’s first of the season in the third minute of first-half stoppage time.
The Crew goal began with Nagbe receiving a pass from Pedro Santos just past midfield. Nagbe shirked Alexander Callens and had an unimpeded 40-yard sprint down the right side.
As he entered the box, Nagbe chipped the ball over Barraza.
The teams are home Wednesday with the Crew facing Nashville SC and New York City hosting CF Montreal.
–Field Level Media