Pedro Santos scored in the 50th minute and Gyasi Zardes tallied in the 93rd and the Columbus Crew extended their unbeaten streak to five games with a 2-0 defeat of Nashville SC in Columbus, Ohio, on Saturday.
The Crew have the best record in MLS on the strength of a defense that has allowed four goals. They are the first team in MLS history to have won their first five home matches by shutout.
Eloy Room made two saves for his seventh shutout in nine matches and the Crew has nine shutouts overall.
Nashville had a four-game unbeaten streak (2-0-2) end. Goalkeeper Joe Willis did not make a save.
The Crew have gone 3-0-2 in the past five matches.
Columbus took the lead when pressure near midfield enabled Zardes to strip the ball from U.S. national team teammate Walker Zimmerman. Nashville was unable to catch Zardes down the left flank.
He spotted Santos unmarked at the top of the box. Santos took two dribbles and fired from 16 yards for his second goal of the season.
The Crew have seven of their 19 goals in the first 15 minutes of the second half.
Zimmerman tried to make amends with a shot from 15 yards in the 85th but Room made a save and Zardes got the insurance goal, his ninth of the season and fourth in three games, with a heel touch off a pass by Artur.
Befitting teams that put defense at the forefront, there were limited chances in a first half that had nine shots combined, six by the Crew, and none on goal.
The Crew continue at home Wednesday vs. Minnesota United. Nashville SC hosts D.C. United on Wednesday.