Sainey Nyassi scored for the second straight game and Zack Schilawski added his first goal of the 2011 preseason as the New England Revolution claimed a 2-1 win over the Columbus Crew on Sunday afternoon at Finley Stadium in Chattanooga, Tenn.
Nyassi gave the Revolution a halftime lead with a deflected goal in the 43rd minute, while Schilawski doubled the advantage with an opportunistic finish in the 81st minute.
Crew forward Tom Heinemann became the first player to score against the Revolution this preseason when he broke up Bobby Shuttleworth’s shutout bid with a consolation goal in stoppage time, but it wasn’t enough to prevent the Revs from maintaining their perfect record (4-0-0).
Revolution coach Steve Nicol used every healthy field player at his disposal against the Crew, playing entirely different lineups in each half. Rookies Ryan Kinne (left midfield), Stephen McCarthy (central midfield) and A.J. Soares (central defense) all started the match, with Soares partnered by recent arrival Franco Coria in central defense. Nigerian midfielder Michael Augustine (right midfield) and trialist Otto Loewy (central defense) entered as part of the new contingent after halftime.
Unavailable because of injury were Kevin Alston (hamstring), Ousmane Dabo (quad), Didier Domi (knee) and Kheli Dube (ankle).
Undeterred by earlier off-target efforts, Nyassi continued to shoot and finally got his reward with the opening goal in the 43rd minute. Marko Perovic’s corner kick was half-cleared to the top of the box, where Nyassi corralled the ball before hitting a low drive through a crowded box. The shot took a wicked deflection off a Crew defender, wrong-footing goalkeeper William Hesmer and bouncing inside the left post.
Kenny Mansally helped the Revs double their lead in the 81st minute. His curling corner kick was met well by a diving Alan Koger, whose header was cleared off the line. Schilawski showed a goal scorer’s instinct in the follow up, pouncing on the loose ball and drilling a shot into the roof of the net from six yards out.
The Revs and Crew will meet again Wednesday at 7:30 p.m.