The Houston Dynamo moved into first place in the Eastern Conference with an emphatic 4-1 victory over D.C. United Friday night, led by a hat trick from rookie forward Will Bruin and roared on by a season-high crowd of 20,577. In the standings, the Dynamo moved just ahead of New York and Philadelphia, who both play tomorrow. The Dynamo are back in action Wednesday night, hosting the defending MLS Cup champion Colorado Rapids.
Houston is now unbeaten in its last six games (3-0-3) and has won three consecutive home games since losing its season opener. The three-goal margin of victory was the most for the Dynamo since a 3-0 win over Kansas City on May 1, 2010. Houston is now 6-0-1 all-time against D.C. United at Robertson Stadium, including one SuperLiga game.
Will Bruin netted the fifth hat trick in Houston history in the game’s first 57 minutes, becoming the first Dynamo rookie to ever score multiple goals in one game. Bruin, a first-round draft pick out of Indiana, scored in the 4th, 41st, and 57th minutes to run his season total to four goals. Houston’s last hat trick came from Brian Ching on August 21, 2010.
Dynamo midfielders Geoff Cameron and Brad Davis each notched two assists on the night. Cameron set up Bruin’s first goal, the duo combined to set up his second goal, and Davis served a free kick for the third goal.
Brad Davis reached several milestones on the night, moving into first place in Major League Soccer with six assists on the season. The two assists give Davis 70 for his MLS career, and his appearance ties him for second in Houston history with 170 appearances in all competitions. Davis also recorded his 60th career assist for the Dynamo in all competitions and his 10th career multiple-assist game for Houston in MLS play.
Houston midfielder Geoff Cameron set up Bruin’s first goal just four minutes into the game, and he combined with Davis to set up the crucial second goal just before halftime. The assists were the first for Cameron since October 25, 2009 – he missed half of the 2010 season due to injury. Cameron also appeared in his 75th MLS game.
Houston forward Cam Weaver netted the clinching goal in the 62nd minute, running onto a long throw-in from Hunter Freeman and firing a high shot into the net. The goal gives Weaver three tallies on the season and five in his last 12 MLS games. It was also the 10th of his MLS career and his 10th with the Dynamo in all competitions. For Freeman, the assist was his first with the Dynamo and the fifth of his MLS career.
Houston goalkeeper Tally Hall earned his 10th career win in all competitions in 25 games for the Dynamo and improved his record in MLS play to 4-4-4.
Dynamo head coach Dominic Kinnear made three substitutions, bringing on Je-Vaughn Watson for his home debut, captain Brian Ching for his first appearance since April 2 (rib separation), and Spanish forward Koke for his Dynamo and MLS debut.
Midfielder Colin Clark made his first start as a member of the Dynamo, playing on the right in place of the injured Danny Cruz. Clark played a season-high 71 minutes as he continues recovering from 2010 ACL surgery.
Defender Corey Ashe made the 105th appearance of his MLS career and his 75th career start for the Dynamo in all competitions.
Next Match: Wednesday, May 4, 7:30 p.m., Dynamo vs. Colorado Rapids, Robertson Stadium
HOUSTON DYNAMO HEAD COACH DOMINIC KINNEAR
On the game …
“The team played very well tonight. Offensively, we were very potent. It’s great to see Will [Bruin] score a hat trick. His goals came in all different fashions. He was a handful for D.C.”
On Will Bruin …
“He listens and he learns and he wants to get better. The guys appreciate his energy and effort on the field.”
On so many new players from last season …
“You never know what kind of character you will bring in with such a high turnover. It is really competitive on the field. Off the field, everyone is clicking.”
On scoring from another free kick …
“There is a lot of talk with our set pieces, and they are still dangerous. Delivery is the most important thing. I think you need that attitude and aggression.”
DYNAMO FORWARD WILL BRUIN
On the hat trick …
“Against New England in the last home game, I had some chances, and I didn’t put them away. Tonight I finished them. As a forward, you have to have a short memory. I really wasn’t thinking about the misses at New England. I just went out and took my first opportunity from today’s game, and it carried on.”
Describing the goals …
“On the first one I peeled out and opened up. Geoff played me a great ball, and all I had to do was just finish it. On the second one, I saw Cam make the near-post run, Brad whipped it in, and I just headed in. On the third one, I just went up and got it.”
DYNAMO FORWARD CAM WEAVER
On his goal …
“It was a really heads-up play by Hunter. I saw him pick up the ball and throw it to me. I think the defenders weren’t expecting us to get the ball in play that quickly.”
DYNAMO GOALKEEPER TALLY HALL
On being in first place …
“It’s kind of crazy. You always say in the beginning of the season that I want the season to start well. You know it’s one thing wishing it, but the guys have been great. How many times did Andrew [Hainault] slide in for a blocked shot? Hunter [Freeman] did it, and all the guys slide in for a blocked shot.”
On Will Bruin …
“This is the performance the whole team knows that he is capable of. No question the guy has a nose for the net. Tonight he showed it. Great performance.”
On the club honoring Pat Onstad …
“He’s been a big figure, if not the figure, for a lot of the championships.Hats off to him and his career. I’m glad I could be a part of the team he was on. Best of luck to him and his career. It’s great that the city and the team honored him tonight.”