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The Montenegrin’s set-piece prowess paid off again in first-half stoppage time, when Jakovic notched his first goal in four years in a D.C. uniform, burying a point-blank finish in the aftermath of a Boskovic corner kick.

But New England cut the deficit three minutes after the break, as Benny Feilhaber’s long-range blast forced a diving save from Hamid and Sene was there to sweep home the rebound. And just two minutes later, Soares nodded a Chris Tierney free kick past Hamid to level the score.

Santos’ strike, however, put the home side back on top, and Hamid came up with a spectacular 90th-minute save on New England substitute Kelyn Rowe to preserve the result.

When the final whistle blew, the 14,627 in attendance unleashed a roar to celebrate their first-place club’s fifth straight win at home.

“The past couple years, results haven’t gone our way,” Hamid said. “Fans don’t get what they deserve, get their money’s worth. But this season, we’re bringing it and we’re focused.”