Heath Pearce scored seven minutes from time as Red Bull New York scored three unanswered goals to rally for a 3-2 win against the Portland Timbers on Sunday night at Red Bull Arena.
Bright Dike and Darlington Nagbe scored inside 32 minutes for the Timbers, but Kenny Cooper scored his 14th goal this season and Tim Cahill followed with his first MLS goal as New York answered in a three-minute span in the first half.
Pearce headed a cross from Jan Gunnar Solli inside the right post in the 83rd, sealing a come-from-behind win for New York. The Red Bulls have nine wins and three draws at home this season.
New York (13-7-5) won for the fourth time in its last six overall, and climbed within two points of Sporting Kansas City for first in the Eastern Conference ahead of their showdown at Livestrong Sporting Park on Aug. 26.
Portland (5-13-6) remained winless on the road, losing its ninth match against three draws in 12 away fixtures this season. The Timbers are winless in eight, and last in the Western Conference.
The Timbers were in position to end their road woes just over a half hour into the game, as Dike and Nagbe stake the visitors to a surprise lead. Dike scored at the left post in the eighth and Nagbe scored off a turnover in the 32nd.
But New York responded before halftime, as Cooper turned a cross from Solli to the left post in the 43rd and Cahill deposited a rebound from the edge of the area in the 45th.
The 2-2 score held until the closing minutes, when Solli drove a cross in from the right and Pearce got in position from 12 yards to turn a header inside the right post for his second goal this season.
Portland will try to turn its season around Saturday, when it hosts Vancouver Whitecaps FC at Jeld-Wen Field.