DC United scores late vs. Crew to clinch playoff berth

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DC United scores late vs. Crew to clinch playoff berth

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Lewis Neal scored in stoppage time and D.C. United beat the Columbus Crew 3-2 on Saturday night to clinch its first playoff berth in five seasons.

Marcelo Saragosa and Nick DeLeon also scored for United (17-10-6). The Washington club ran its unbeaten streak to six games and helped eliminate the Crew (14-12-7) from playoff contention.

The win also pushed United's club home unbeaten streak to 16 (12-0-4). United won the last of its four MLS titles in 2004.

Eddie Gaven and Jairo Arrieta each scored their ninth goals of the season for Columbus.

But the Crew failed to preserve two leads, and saw their playoff hopes end when the Houston Dynamo sealed a 3-1 victory over the Philadelphia Union about 15 minutes later.

United would've clinched one of five Eastern Conference playoff spots with a draw, but can now finish no worse than fourth and is guaranteed at least one home playoff game.

They moved ahead of the Chicago Fire and into second place in the Eastern Conference, and could win the conference with a win at Chicago and a Sporting Kansas City loss in the season finales next weekend.

Neal sealed the win a minute into stoppage time when he finished off a swift counterattack that began when Chris Korb's long ball found Branko Boskovic on the left. Boskovic quickly played to Neal, who finished past a stranded Andy Gruenebaum. Neal and Boskovic were late substitutes for United.

Barron Trump plays soccer with D.C. United players at Easter Egg Roll

Barron Trump plays soccer with D.C. United players at Easter Egg Roll

D.C. United participated at the annual White House Easter Egg Roll on Monday at the invite of event organizers.

Throughout the day, the select players on hand played soccer with the children present.

And one of them was Barron Trump, the 11-year-old son of President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump.

While there, United forward Patrick Mullins and midfielders Julian Buescher and Marcelo Sarvas all received an unscheduled invitation to meet Barron in the White House, where they talked soccer and even kicked around the ball. Sarvas' eldest son, who is around Barron's age, and Talon, the United mascot, also played.

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“He was very knowledgeable about soccer, knew about D.C. United and was interested to know more,” Mullins told the Washington Post. “Little kid to have a passion for the game and to be knowledgeable and have a conversation with us, it makes me feel good about kids growing up playing the game.”

At some point during the day, 94.7 Fresh FM’s Dana McKay tweeted a photo of Barron outside the White House playing soccer in an Arsenal jersey.

According to the Post, Barron received a D.C. United soccer ball that was signed by the players and personalized with a message welcoming him to Washington. He also has an open invitation from the team to visit with them.

Barron currently lives in New York City with his mother.

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United have now won back-to-back games after slow start to the season

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USA TODAY Sports Images

United have now won back-to-back games after slow start to the season

WASHINGTON -- Lloyd Sam and Luciano Acosta scored in the second half in D.C. United's 2-1 victory over NYCFC on Saturday.

After going scoreless in the first three matches of the season, D.C. United (2-2-1) has scored two goals in each of the last two.

In the 53rd minute, Lloyd stole the ball from defender Frederic Brillant deep in NYCFC's half and fired the ball from near the penalty spot past the sliding Johnson. Sam's first goal this season came in his 100th MLS start.

Acosta scored his second goal this season in the 73rd minute via a rebound. He passed to Sam, whose shot was blocked by Johnson back to Acosta for an easy score.

Bill Hamid made a terrific double-save for United in the 82nd minute, but two minutes later, NYCFC's Thomas McNamara sent a cross to David Villa, who scored his third of the season.

NYCFC (2-2-1) dominated possession and outshot United 15-12, with both teams putting six shots on target. NYCFC beat United 4-0 on March 12.