By Pardeep Cattry

FOXBORO (NE Revolution) — A late goal from substitute Adam Buksa was enough to give the New England Revolution a 1-0 win against Eastern Conference rival Columbus SC, livening up a Sunday match at Gillette Stadium in which scoring chances were at a premium.

The hosts got off to a strong start, recording five shots in the opening 12 minutes. The team’s lone shot on goal from that period was an attempt from Arnor Ingvi Traustason, whose shot from inside the box was saved by Eloy Room. Columbus slowly grew into the match at that point and created a more level playing field, doing enough to end the Revolution’s momentum but not being sharp enough to truly impose themselves on a goalless game.

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Prior to the dramatic finale, both sides came agonizingly close to opening the scoring only to be denied by the post. First Carles Gil looked to have found the breakthrough with a shot from close range but saw his effort superbly turned onto the post by Room, who then gratefully snapped up the ball as it rebounded back to him.

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Then in the second half, Crew midfielder Artur repeated the trick at the same end, seeing a powerful drive bounce back off the post.

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A stalemate appeared the likely outcome but Buksa, dropped to the bench for Sunday’s game, had other ideas. From the right, Brandon Bye sent the ball low across the face of goal and, three minutes after coming into the game, Buksa got in front of his marker to score from close range and send the Revolution to the top of the Eastern Conference.