MONTREAL – A hat trick by Impact Designated Player Marco Di Vaio led the Montreal Impact to a 5-3 win versus the Philadelphia Union Saturday night at Stade Saputo, helping the team remain undefeated at home this season. Fellow striker Andrew Wenger and midfielder Blake Smith also scored in the win.
The Impact opened the score early in the game when Justin Mapp played a ball deep toward the right touchline in the second minute. Forward Andrew Wenger then played a cross back towards the top of the box where Di Vaio - posted about 16 yards out from the short post - volleyed the low cross with his left towards the far corner. Di Vaio’s 7th of the season was the fastest goal ever scored by the Impact in MLS.
The Union replied in the 5th minute when a missed clearance attempt from inside the box fell to the feet of midfielder Michael Farfan, who played a short pass to forward Jack McInerney near the left post. The MLS leader scored his ninth, placing the ball back towards the opposite post from seven yards out.
The Impact took the lead back in the 29th minute when Di Vaio scored his second of the game. Mapp, earning his second assist of the match, played the ball over the Union defence from near the right touchline as the Italian striker timed his run perfectly before firing a right-footer to the top corner, same side.
VINE: Two F18s flew by Stade Saputo
before the kick-off
Three minutes later, Di Vaio scored his third of the game when Andres Romero, dribbling into the box, chipped a short cross from near the goal line toward the left side of goalkeeper Zac MacMath. The Impact’s DP was waiting to one-time the ball short side. Di Vaio’s hat trick goal puts him into a tie for the league lead with Philadelphia’s McInerney.
Philadelphia cut the lead to one in the 69th minute when second half sub Antoine Hoppenot took a shot from far out, down the right touch line, that beat Impact keeper Troy Perkins, sailing over his head to the far post.
The Impact restored its two goal lead in the 75th minute when Andrew Wenger scored his first of the season. From a Felipe corner kick, Wenger jumped in the air to beat his defender near the corner of the six yard box, short side, redirecting the ball past MacMath.
The Union cut into the score line again in the 85th minute when Sebastien Le Toux found a loose ball in the box and fired it home past a diving Perkins.
In stoppage time, midfielder Patrice Bernier played second half substitute Blake Smith into space down the left flank. After dribbling towards the box, the Impact’s first round selection of the last MLS SuperDraft beat MacMath with a low shot to score his first career marker in MLS.
“This was an intense and spectacular game,” said Impact head coach Marco Schällibaum. “We gave up three goals, but they are a good team. We had the want and desire to win this game, even in moments of adversity. This is a group that wants to win for each other, for the club and its supporters.”
WATCH: Postgame reactions
“We are happy because this was a big win for us,” said Di Vaio. “We needed to win to stay near the top of the standings. It’s been a long time that I haven’t scored three goals, so it’s good for my confidence, but even more so, I’m always pleased to help the team win. I’m not looking at winning the scoring title. I look at scoring goals to help my team win and make the playoffs.”
“It felt great to get my first goal,” said midfielder Blake Smith. “It’s something I worked hard for and it was special that it came at an important moment to help secure the win for the team.”
The team hits the road for its next three games. The first will be at BC Place on Wednesday, May 29, at 10pm (ET) against the Vancouver Whitecaps FC in the second leg of the Amway Canadian Championship final aggregate goal series. Then three days later, the Impact will face Sporting Kansas City at Sporting Park on Saturday, June 1, at 8:30pm (ET). Finally, the Impact will take on the Crew in Columbus on June 15, at 7:30pm (ET).
MTL – GK-Troy Perkins; D-Jeb Brovsky (Karl W. Ouimette 77’), Matteo Ferrari, Alessandro Nesta, Dennis Iapichino; M- Patrice Bernier, Felipe, Andrés Romero (Blake Smith 61’), Justin Mapp; F-Andrew Wenger, Marco Di Vaio (Sinisa Ubiparipovic 85’)
Unused subs: GK-Evan Bush; M-Wandrille Lefèvre, Collen Warner, Sanna Nyassi
PHI – GK-Zac MacMath; D-Sheanon Williams, Jeff Parke, Amobi Okugo, Raymon Gaddis; M-Brian Carroll, Kléberson (Antoine Hoppenot 65’), Michael Farfan (Keon Daniel 78’); F-Sébastien Le Toux, Danny Cruz (Conor Casey 60’), Jack McInerney
Unused subs: GK-Chris Konopka; D-Don Anding, Leo Fernandes, Matt Kassel
MTL – Di Vaio (Wenger, Mapp) 2’
PHI – McInerney (Farfan) 5’
MTL – Di Vaio (Mapp) 29’
MTL – Di Vaio (Romero) 32’
PHI – Hoppenot (Okugo) 69’
MTL – Wenger (Felipe) 75’
PHI – Le Toux 85’
MTL – Smith (Bernier) 94’
MTL – Di Vaio 29’
PHI – Farfan 44’
MTL – Felipe 70’
MTL – Smith 91’