Dynamo 3, Chicago Fire 2
Early goals by Kei Kamara and Ricardo Clark gave the Dynamo a commanding lead, but Chicago equalized with two goals just after halftime. Houston still found a way to get the win, as Corey Ashe was taken down in the box, and Stuart Holden converted the penalty kick in the 83rd minute for the win.
The Houston Dynamo regained the overall points lead in Major League Soccer Sunday night with a dramatic 3-2 win over the Chicago Fire at Robertson Stadium before a crowd of 18,809. Stuart Holden’s 83rd-minute penalty kick was the decisive goal after Chicago had rallied from a two-goal halftime deficit.
The Dynamo are now 11-6-5 for 38 points, two more than Eastern Conference leader Columbus. In the Western Conference, Houston leads second-place Los Angeles by seven points.
The win was Houston’s fifth consecutive in the series against Chicago
The Dynamo opened the scoring in the 21st minute, when midfielder Geoff Cameron took a quick throw-in on the right sideline and found Kei Kamara sneaking behind the defense. Kamara, alone in the box, took his time and rifled a shot past Jon Busch for his first goal since July 4 and his fifth of the season. The goal was the first allowed by Chicago in MLS regular season play in 395 minutes, dating back to its 2-1 July 4 win against Colorado.
Houston doubled its lead in the 38th minute when Brian Ching lobbed a ball into the penalty area for central midfielder Ricardo Clark, making a deep run. Clark beat Chicago’s Jon Busch to the ball and chipped it over Busch with his left foot for his first goal of the season and first since October 4, 2008.
Chicago began its comeback in the 46th minute, when Chris Rolfe fired a low shot from 25 yards away into the lower right-hand corner for his fourth goal of the year.
Less than two minutes later, Chicago was level, as Cuauhtémoc Blanco fought his way past a defender on the end line and chipped a ball to the back post, where second-year player Peter Lowry, making the second start of his MLS career, ripped a sliding full volley to tie the game.
Houston re-took the lead in the 83rd minute when midfielder Corey Ashe was taken down in the penalty area. Stuart Holden stepped up to the resulting penalty kick and fired it past Jon Busch for his sixth goal of the season, a new career high in MLS play. Holden had five MLS goals in 2007. His career high in all competitions is seven goals, set in 2008.
For Houston, captain Wade Barrett returned to the starting lineup for the first time since June 13 due to a gastrocnemius strain. Defender Bobby Boswell played in his 130th career MLS game, forward Brian Ching made his 120th career MLS start, and midfielder Corey Ashe made his 25th career MLS start..
Houston was without forward Cam Weaver (hernia surgery), midfielders Brad Davis (suspension) and Brian Mullan (ankle), and defenders Richard Mulrooney (knee surgery) and Eddie Robinson (disabled list).
Chicago Fire (8-4-8) vs. Houston Dynamo (11-6-5)
August 9, 2009 -- Robertson Stadium, Houston TX
HOU -- Kei Kamara 5 (Geoff Cameron 3) 21
HOU -- Ricardo Clark 1 (Brian Ching 2) 37
CHI -- Chris Rolfe 4 (unassisted) 46
CHI -- Peter Lowry 1 (Cuauhtemoc Blanco 8) 48
HOU -- Stuart Holden 6 (penalty kick) 83
Chicago Fire -- Jon Busch, Brandon Prideaux, C.J. Brown, Bakary Soumare (Mike Banner 46), Gonzalo Segares (Daniel Woolard 5, Dasan Robinson 60), Peter Lowry, Logan Pause, Cuauhtemoc Blanco, Marco Pappa, Patrick Nyarko, Chris Rolfe.
Substitutes Not Used: Andrew Dykstra, Calen Carr, Baggio Husidic, Justin Mapp.
Houston Dynamo -- Pat Onstad, Andrew Hainault, Bobby Boswell, Julius James, Wade Barrett, Geoff Cameron, Ricardo Clark, Stuart Holden, Corey Ashe, Brian Ching (Ade Akinbiyi 89), Kei Kamara (Dominic Oduro 80).
Substitutes Not Used: Tally Hall, MIke Chabala, Danny Cruz, Erik Ustruck, Craig Waibel.
CHI -- C.J. Brown (caution; Reckless Tackle) 35
CHI -- Brandon Prideaux (caution; Reckless Tackle) 39
CHI -- Jon Busch (caution; Dissent) 47+
HOU -- Brian Ching (caution; Reckless Tackle) 56
CHI -- Chris Rolfe (caution; Dissent) 62
CHI -- Cuauhtemoc Blanco (caution; Reckless Foul) 73
Referee: Terry Vaughn
Referee's Assistants: Jeff Muschik; Greg Boles
4th official: Jasen Anno
Weather: Partly Cloudy-and-87-degrees
All statistics contained in this boxscore are unofficial