CHESTER, Pa. — Ronald Matarrita and Ismael Tajouri-Shradi scored and New York City FC beat the Philadelphia Union 2-1 on Sunday in the regular-season finale.
New York City (18-6-10), the top seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs, earned a first-round bye and will play No. 4 seed Toronto or fifth-seeded D.C. United in the conference semifinals.
Philadelphia (16-11-7) lost three of its last four regular-season games, falling from first to third in the Eastern standings. The Union will host the sixth-seeded New York Red Bulls in the knockout round.
Matarrita opened the scoring in the sixth minute. Valentin Castellanos, at the top of the area, first-timed a pass from Ben Sweat to Matarrita for the finish from near the spot. It was the first goal of the season for the 25-year-old defender.
Ismael Tajouri-Shradi chipped an entry from outside the area that deflected off the Union's Jamiro Monteiro into the goal to make it 2-0 in the 22nd and Philadelphia's Marco Fabian converted from the spot in the 87th minute.
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Pedro Santos had a goal and an assist in the second half and the Columbus Crew beat the Union 2-0 on Sunday night to hand the Eastern Conference's top seed to New York City FC.
Youness Mokhtar's first career goal, set up by Luis Diaz and Santos, put Columbus up in the 69th minute. Four minutes later, Santos' 11th goal doomed the Union, who fell six points behind NYCFC and into a tie for second with Atlanta United, which holds the tiebreaker with one game to play.
Eloy Room made three saves for his first shutout.
The game was delayed by almost an hour as lightning arrived with the start of halftime.
On the attack, the Union (16-10-7) failed to get a strong shot and off the block the Crew (10-15-8) quickly countered. Speedy Luis Diaz dribbled the ball across midfield on the right before sending it middle to Santos, who put it to Mokhtar in the box left. Mokhtar counted back into the middle and beat three defenders with a low drive past Andre Blake.
Off a corner four minutes later, a Union defender's header put the ball straight up in the air and Blake punched it out of the box. Santos pounced on the loose ball sending a four-bouncer through a crowd of players past the diving Blake.
MONTREAL — Finnish winger Lassi Lappalainen scored twice in his Major League Soccer debut and Orji Okwonkwo also had two goals to help the Montreal Impact beat the Eastern Conference-leading Philadelphia Union 4-0 on Saturday night.
Evan Bush made three saves for his seventh shutout of the season, helping the Impact (10-11-3) snap a four-game skid. The Impact were winless since June 26 and had only four goals during the losing streak.
The Union (11-7-6) lost for the second time in three matches.