NYCFC players celebrate a goal. (Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY Sports)
VANCOUVER — A pair of 3-1 results propelled New York City FC into third place in the MLS Eastern Conference and into the MLS Cup playoffs Saturday night.
City recorded a win over Vancouver Whitecaps FC while the Philadelphia Union moved atop the heap with a similar result over Atlanta United, which had been in the lead.
This is how the standings stand:
Philly (15-8-6, 51 points) leads NYCFC (14-5-8, 50) by a point, but City has two games in hand. Atlanta (15-10-3, 48) trails in third place. Vancouver (6-15-9, 27), which is the Western Conference cellar, was eliminated from playoff contention.
Alexandru Mitrita assisted on the first goal and scored an insurance tally for NYCFC at B.C. Place. Heber and Gary Mackay-Steven also found the net..C
Heber struck in the 10th minute and Mackay-Steven followed to double the lead 16 minutes later.
After Yordy Reyna sliced the lead in half in the 64th minute, Mitrita made life easier for the visitors by scoring in the 72nd minute.