Ontivero, Piatti score as Impact draw with Sporting Kansas City | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Ontivero, Piatti score as Impact draw with Sporting Kansas City

Montreal Impact's Lucas Ontivero, bottom, challenges Sporting Kansas City's Jimmy Medranda during second half MLS soccer action in Montreal, Saturday, June 25, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
June 25, 2016 - 8:01 PM

MONTREAL - Impact coach Mauro Biello isn't too concerned about Montreal's current form.

The Impact's 2-2 draw against Sporting KC on Saturday extended his club's winless run to four games in all competitions.

Montreal started the season on a roll, winning four of six matches. But the team has just one win in their last nine in MLS (1-2-6).

"I don't want to say it's a problem. We're not losing games," said an optimistic Biello.

"It's frustrating because we haven't gotten to that next step just yet. That's what we're going to continue to work on."

The Impact (5-4-6) let two leads slip away on Saturday in front of 20,032 fans at Saputo Stadium.

Montreal got goals from Lucas Ontivero and Ignacio Piatti but was forced to settle for a draw after Dom Dwyer scored twice for Sporting KC (6-8-4).

"We played well," said Biello. "We were dangerous. We created chances. But we gave them two goals. Those are mistakes we can't make. Scoring two goals at home should be enough."

The home side's first goal was a thing of a beauty.

After clever footwork to escape a challenge, Didier Drogba curled a cross into the penalty box, right onto defender Hassoun Camara's boot. Without letting the ball drop, Camara side-footed to Ontivero, who headed the ball home past goalkeeper Tim Melia in the 16th minute.

Biello said Ontivero's goal was "one of the nicest of the year" for the Impact.

Piatti, playing with a brace on his left hand, was back in the Impact lineup for the first time since undergoing surgery on June 3.

The Argentine scored from the penalty spot in the 39th minute — his team-leading ninth goal of the year — to give Montreal a 2-1 lead.

Drogba earned the spot kick after being taken down by defender Jimmy Medranda in the box.

But the two goals were not enough for Montreal to record its first win over Kansas City in nearly three years.

"We played offensively and that opened up the pitch in the back," said captain Patrice Bernier, who came on as a substitute in the 70th minute. "We scored, got comfortable, and let our guard down. We didn't give them a lot of chances, but they took advantage of the ones we did give them."

Dwyer continued his dominance over the Impact, scoring his eighth and ninth career goals against Montreal. No other MLS player has scored more than seven goals all-time against the Impact.

"I think it's more coincidental," said Dwyer. "I'm here for a reason, and that's to score goals. That's why I'm at this club. So I think I did my job tonight. Just not quite enough to get us three points."

The striker's first of the evening came in the 21st minute when the visitors were losing 1-0. Dwyer got his head on a cross by Roger Espinoza from close range, giving goalkeeper Evan Bush no chance to make the save.

Dwyer's second of the night brought KC level again. Down 2-1, the 25-year-old fired a left-footed strike from just outside the 18-yard box in the 59th minute. The shot stayed low and found the corner of the net, just out of Bush's reach.

On both goals, Montreal defender Wandrille Lefevre gave Dwyer too much space to work with.

"Defensively we have to be better than that," said Bush. "Smart attacking players know to get the little half step when the defender is leaning and shoot between the legs.

"We didn't deal with him the way we should have tonight."

Sporting Kansas City has not lost against Montreal since July 27, 2013, going 4-0-1 over that stretch.

Notes: Camara reached the 10,000-minute plateau in an Impact uniform (NASL and MLS). … Midfielder Marco Donadel (ankle) and defender Donny Toia (hamstring) did not dress for Montreal. … Sporting KC is 3-1-2 all-time at Saputo Stadium.

News from © The Canadian Press, 2016
The Canadian Press

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