On a strange evening, both sides finished with nine men. Each team had a player sent off, and then - having used all their available substitutions - injuries left the Rapids and the Impact two short by the final whistle.
Jared Watts was the first to go, following a tackle on Chris Duvall. After Video Review, the referee concluded it was worthy of a red card and sent Watts packing for the night in the 12th minute. The game returned to equal standing 20 minutes later when Daniel Lovitz was also shown a straight red for violent conduct on Mike da Fonte.
The scoring opened in the final moments of the first stanza when Stefan Aigner broke through for his first goal in burgundy. Mekeil Williams curled in a perfectly placed cross from the left flank and Aigner met it with his head, directing his attempt into the bottom corner of the goal.
Referee Jorge Gonzalez was called into action once more when Marlon Hairston made a reaching tackle on Montreal’s leading goal scorer, Ignacio Piatti in the box. After initially calling it a penalty, the play went to Video Review and the spot kick was overturned once proved contact of the ball was made.
Montreal Impact leveled the game in the 62nd minute when Samuel Piette laid the ball off to Matteo Mancosu, who sent a rocket into the top corner past an outstretched Tim Howard.
The tie was nearly broken when Piatti passed the ball through to Anthony Jackson-Hamel who met Howard one-on-one, but with great positioning, the Rapids keeper deflected the shot wide.
Alan Gordon and Mohammed Saeid came on in the 71st and 79th minutes to liven up play, replacing Aigner and Micheal Azira, respectively.
The Rapids finally broke the tie nine minutes from time when Dominique Badji found space on the left flank before sending a cross that met the boot of Gordon, who tallied his third game-winner of the season.
The Rapids (8-18-5; 29 points) are home next weekend for the third and final meeting of the season against FC Dallas. Kickoff on Saturday, October 7 is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. MT at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park (Altitude).
Colorado Rapids 2-1 Montreal Impact
Dick’s Sporting Good Park; Commerce City, CO
Saturday, September 30, 2017
COL: Stefan Aigner (Mekeil Williams) 45’+3’
MTL: Matteo Mancosu (Samuel Piette) 62’
COL: Alan Gordon (Dominique Badji, Mekeil Williams) 81’
COL: Jared Watts (ejection) 12’
MTL: Daniel Lovitz (ejection) 32’
COL: Kortne Ford (caution) 48’
COL: Alan Gordon (caution) 82’
Colorado Rapids: Tim Howard; Mike da Fonte (Nana Boateng HT), Kortne Ford, Axel Sjöberg, Mekeil Williams; Jared Watts, Micheal Azira (Mohammed Saeid 79’); Marlon Hairston, Stefan Aigner (Alan Gordon 72’), Joshua Gatt; Dominique Badji.
Subs not used: Zac MacMath, Eric Miller, Dillon Serna, Shkëlzen Gashi.
Montreal Impact: Evan Bush; Chris Duvall (Hassoun Camara 12’), Laurent Ciman, Deian Boldor, Daniel Lovitz; Samuel Piette, Patrice Bernier (Michael Salazar 74’); Dominic Oduro (Anthony Jackson-Hamel 67’), Andrés Romero, Ignacio Piatti; Matteo Mancosu.
Subs not used: Maxime Crépeau, Kyle Fisher, Hernán Bernardello, Marco Donadel.
Colorado Rapids: 8-18-5 (29 points)
Montreal Impact: 11-15-6 (39 points)