MLS

MLS: White hat-trick inspires play-off chasing Whitecaps as Montreal strike blow to Atlanta's hopes

By Sports Desk October 02, 2021

Vancouver Whitecaps boosted their MLS play-off chances with a Brian White-inspired 3-0 victory over San Jose Earthquakes on Saturday.

White scored a hat-trick as the Whitecaps moved within just one point of the seventh and final post-season spot in the Western Conference heading into the last seven matches of the regular season.

A recruit from New York Red Bulls following June's trade, White – who has scored eight goals in his past nine games – opened the scoring in the 26th minute.

White doubled the lead with a header approaching the hour mark before completing his first career hat-trick 17 minutes from the end – using his head to get on the end of Ryan Gauld's corner.

Montreal topped fellow Eastern Conference play-off hopefuls Atlanta United 2-1 courtesy of Romell Quioto's double.

Heading into the fixture, twelve of the last 15 goals conceded by Atlanta had come in the second half of their games and none of those 15 goals were shipped in the first half an hour.

Quioto scored a five-minute brace inside the opening 10 minutes of the second half to lift Montreal up to fifth in the east, while striking a blow to Atlanta's post-season chances.

Atlanta are eighth and outside the play-off spots – level on points with seventh-placed Philadelphia Union, who have played two games less.

Elsewhere, Orlando City catapulted themselves up to third in the Eastern Conference after Daryl Dike's 97th-minute goal snatched a 2-1 win over DC United, the Red Bulls edged FC Cincinnati 1-0, Austin defeated Real Salt Lake 2-1 and Dallas played out a 0-0 draw with 10-man Minnesota United.

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