VANCOUVER — Brian White scored the lone goal Saturday as the Vancouver Whitecaps improved their playoff picture with a 1-0 shutout over FC Dallas in Vancouver.
The ‘Caps (8-8-9) were quick to attack and continued to bombard the Toros (6-12-9) across the match, outshooting the visitors 19-16.
White was behind many of the opportunities and headed in his sixth strike of the season in the 20th minute. Russell Teibert registered an assist on the play.
Vancouver goalkeeper Maxime Crepeau had seven saves — including one on a penalty kick — to collect his fourth clean sheet of the season. Jimmy Maurer had four stops for Dallas.
The result extended Dallas’ winless streak to five games (0-3-2) and marked the club’s first game under interim coach Marco Ferruzzi, who took over after head coach Luchi Gonzalez was fired on Sept. 19.
The victory moved the ‘Caps to within three points of a playoff spot with nine games to go in the regular season.
Dallas had a prime opportunity to tie things up late on Saturday.
Referee Kevin Stott awarded the visitors a penalty kick in injury time when Vancouver's Patrick Metcalfe took down a Dallas player inside the box. The call was upheld after video review.
Franco Jara blasted a low, centre shot on net but Crepeau dove to make the stop.
The netminder was mobbed by his teammates before directing them to get back to the play.
Dallas controlled 59.1 per cent of possession Saturday but it was Vancouver that dominated much of the action, pinning the Toros in their own end for long stretches at a time.
Teibert set up the only goal of the night in the 20th minute. Stationed at the top corner of the box, the veteran 'Caps midfielder sent in and the ball glanced off White's head and into the back of the net.
White nearly added another in the 41st minute. Cristian Dajome lasered a pass to White's feet and the American striker took a left-footed shot from the top of the six-yard box, only to see it skirt just wide of the post.
Dajome had an incredible chance of his own just three minutes into Saturday's game.
Vancouver's attacking midfielder Ryan Gauld delivered a beautiful ball to the Colombian in the box and while Dajome got his head on it, Maurer made the stop.
Dallas had chances, too, in the first half, outshooting the 'Caps 9-8, though both sides registered three shots on target.
Crepeau preserved Vancouver's lead heading into the locker room.
The Canadian 'keeper looked calm and poised as he tracked a header from Dallas wunderkind Ricardo Pepi in the 28th minute, scooping up the ball for the save. Just a minute later, Crepeau leapt up and snatched a ball out of the air following a header by Jesus Ferreira.
Saturday's game kicked off a busy week for the 'Caps. They'll head to Houston to face the Dynamo on Monday, then return to B.C. to host the San Jose Earthquakes on Oct. 2. Dallas hosts Sporting Kansas City on Wednesday.
NOTES: Vancouver's Bruno Gaspar (52nd minute) and Lucas Cavallini (58th) each received a yellow card caution for bad fouls. Dallas' Matt Hedges (71st), Ema Twumasi (81st) and Bryan Acosta (90th) all received the same warning. … The 'Caps hosted "front line heroes appreciation night" Saturday, marking the occasion with a standing ovation just before the 7 p.m. kickoff. Players on both the field and bench banged wooden spoons on frying pans, cheering for front line workers in the stands.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 25, 2021.
Gemma Karstens-Smith, The Canadian Press