Orlando City (7-11-1, 22 points) came into Orlando City Stadium with a new, refreshed attitude that proved to be too much for struggling Toronto FC (4-11-4, 16 points) on Saturday. The Lions defeated the Reds 2-1 in front of a crowd of 23,420.
The shorthanded former MLS champions (missing injured superstar Jozy Altidore, who made an appearance on the Toronto bench for the first time since March) struggled to keep Orlando off of the sheet. Orlando opened the scoring in the 34th minute with a Dom Dwyer blast from distance that Toronto goalkeeper Alex Bono couldn’t handle. The rebound popped out to Schuler, who calmly headed into the back of the net. It was Schuler’s first goal as a Lion. It was the first time Orlando scored first since April 20th.
Orlando hit pay dirt again in the second half when Dwyer was fed a pass from Chris Mueller and knocked it in for his with goal of the season.
Goalkeeper Earl Edwards, Jr. earned his first MLS win as coach Jame O’Conner kept mainstay Joe Bendik out for rest because of the upcoming schedule.
Edwards, who was City’s third-round pick in the 2015 MLS SuperDraft, was called upon for three saves in the match, his biggest coming in the 59th minute. With Toronto pressing to get back in the match, Michael Bradley lofted a longball over the Lions back line to Sebastian Giovinco, who brought it down with one touch before putting it on net. Edwards charged out to block the shot and preserve City’s two-goal lead.
Nick Hagglund scored for Toronto in the 94th minute.
The Lions face a quick turnaround as they visit the Philadelphia Union on Wednesday, July 18, in the 2018 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup quarterfinal. City continues MLS play when it visits Columbus on Saturday before returning to Orlando City Stadium to host New York City FC on Thursday, July 26.