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Sporting reaches top spot in East with Red Bulls defeat

Apr 18, 2013 - 1:43 AM Harrison, NJ (Sports Network) - Sporting Kansas City ascended into first place in the Eastern Conference on Wednesday after posting a 1-0 win over the New York Red Bulls at Red Bull Arena.

Sporting KC came into the match riding a wave of positive momentum following a home win against D.C. United last time out and Aurelien Collin's first goal of the season inside the quarter-hour mark was all SKC needed to take home the three points.

The clean sheet also extends the club's impressive shutout streak to 519 consecutive minutes. The two-time regular-season East champs have not conceded a goal since the 21st minute of a 2-1 setback against Toronto FC on March 9 and have won three consecutive league matches.

Both teams came out of the gate with plenty of pace early on and Sporting Kansas City had the first great chance just six minutes into the contest as Chance Myers worked his way through the New York backline and fired a shot toward goal, but it skittered past the far post.

Seven minutes later, Sporting connected on the only goal of the match when Graham Zusi struck an exceptional corner kick from the right flag. Collin out-muscled New York defender Jamison Olave for inside position in the penalty area and nodded it into the top right corner, out of the reach of Red Bulls goalkeeper Luis Robles for the 1-0 advantage.

New York had a great chance to put the sides on level terms in the 31st minute when Fabian Espindola broke into the attacking third on the left flank and cut to the middle of the park before firing a low shot, but it went straight to SKC goalkeeper Jimmy Nielsen for an easy save.

After the halftime intermission, New York had another opportunity just moments into the second half as Thierry Henry ripped a left-footed strike toward goal from outside the box, but it curled just wide of the left post.

New York pushed men forward throughout the second half and put several shots in the direction of goal, but the finishing was a bit off all night long and the Red Bulls were never able to come up with an equalizing goal.

Kansas City (4-1-2) will take its shutout streak on the road to Los Angeles to battle the Galaxy on Saturday, while the Red Bulls (2-4-2) remain on home soil to tangle with the New England Revolution on Saturday.