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Up Three Goals, Columbus Crew SC Miss Out on Chance for Three Points

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A 3-0 in the second half quickly became a 3-3 draw between Crew SC and Toronto FC.

Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

It all began so well for Columbus Crew SC, who opened a 3-0 early second half lead over Toronto FC Saturday night in front of a sellout crowd of 21,324 - the largest crowd at MAPFRE Stadium for a game since 2008.

But moments after Ethan Finlay struck for the third goal from the Black & Gold, Sebastian Giovinco finished a one-time effort and the momentum quickly went Toronto's way.

TFC never looked back.

After a back-and-forth opening stage of the game, Crew SC took the early lead thanks to another incredibly athletic play from Major League Soccer's league-leading goal scorer, Kei Kamara.

The big striker got above everyone else on a headed pass from Federico Higuain and beat Toronto goalkeeper Joe Bendik for an early 1-0 lead 15 minutes into the match.

Despite taking the lead, the Black & Gold weren't able to take hold of the match and the Reds kept coming at Columbus, creating several good chances.

Midfielder Tony Tchani finally gave Crew SC a cushion nine minutes before halftime when he finished off a missed touch by Finlay, firing home a shot from the top of the 18-yard box.

It all seemed done and dusted just three minutes after halftime when Finlay streaked in behind the TFC defense to latch on to a Justin Meram pass and finished it under Bendik for 3-0.

But two minutes later, a wide-open Giovinco hit a strike on the cross from midfielder Collen Warner and the comeback was on.

Five minutes after that Warner was on the finishing end of a cross, redirecting a low ball across the 18-yard box midfielder Daniel Lovitz to make it a one-goal deficit.

Although they allowed Toronto to climb back in the match, it seemed Crew SC would get out of this match unscathed.

As the game neared its conclusion, another Columbus mistake gifted The Reds a chance for a point.

After a giveaway, a long ball played in to the penalty area caused Crew SC left back Waylon Francis to work back, but he ran over Toronto forward Jozy Altidore in doing so and referee Fotis Bazakos awarded the spot kick.

Altidore stepped up and fired home the shot from 12 yards out to seal the match.

Crew SC squandered away a once promising lead for a single point at home.

The Black & Gold are back in action next Saturday on the road to Orlando City SC.