Columbus Crew 2 celebrates its championship. (Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports)

Columbus Crew 2 won the first MLS NEXT Pro Cup, 4-1 over St Louis CITY2 in front of its home fans at Field in Columbus, Ohio on Saturday.

Crew 2 midfielder Marco Micaletto was named game MVP after scoring the game-winning goal in first-half stoppage time.

Crew 2 opened the scoring in the 45th minute after earning a penalty kick, which midfielder Isaiah Parente converted past the St Louis CITY2 goalkeeper for a 1-0 lead. The home side added a second goal in the third minute of first-half stoppage time when Micaletto’s dipping cross snuck under the goalkeeper for a 2-0 advantage.

Columbus made it 3-0 in the 58th minute after forward Jacen Russell-Rowe sent the goalkeeper the wrong way from the penalty spot for his fourth goal of the postseason.

St Louis CITY2 cut the deficit to 3-1 in the 80th minute, when midfielder Célio Pompeu stole the ball from the Crew 2 goalkeeper and passed it into the open goal.

The hosts restored their three-goal lead just three minutes later as Russell-Rowe found Ryan Telfer on the counterattack, who unleashed a strike into the corner of the net to complete the scoring.

Crew 2 finished off a historic inaugural season by winning the MLS NEXT Pro Cup and recording the most points of any team in the regular season (55). The club’s season was led by regular season MVP Russell-Rowe, and Best XI selections Parente (midfielder), Mohamed Farsi (defender) and Patrick Schulte (goalkeeper). Crew 2 head coach Lauren Courtois also was named coach of the year after directing the club to a 16-3-5 record with two shootout wins.