The Houston Dynamo snapped a seven-game winless streak with a tense 2-1 victory over Chivas USA Saturday night at Robertson Stadium. Midfielder Brad Davis delivered his league-leading ninth assist of the year and set up a second goal as the Dynamo earned their first win since April 29.
With the win, Houston improved to 8-0-2 all-time at home against Chivas USA in MLS and playoff games and 10-3-6 against Chivas in all competitions. Brad Davis has now notched a goal or an assist against Chivas USA in each of the club’s seven seasons, dating back to 2005.
The Dynamo return to action next Saturday, hosting Eastern Conference rival Columbus with a chance to get back to the .500 mark. Houston and Columbus are currently tied for third in the conference, although the Crew have two games in hand and play tomorrow afternoon.
On Saturday night, after the Dynamo had a third-minute header controversially disallowed, Chivas USA took the lead in just the seventh minute. Forward Marcos Mondaini reacted first to a back pass and netted his third goal of the season, breaking a scoring drought of 808 minutes and almost five years for Chivas in league play in Houston.
Houston responded in the 29th minute, when Brad Davis delivered a free kick and Geoff Cameron – starting in midfield again after playing center back last week – flicked a header inside the far post for his second goal of the season. Cameron also scored Houston’s first goal in last year’s home game against Chivas USA, a 3-0 Dynamo win. For Davis, the assist was his ninth of the season, most in Major League Soccer.
The Dynamo carried a 15-9 advantage in shots on the night and made their aggression pay off in the 55th minute. Brad Davis whipped a free kick hard and low at the near post, and as Chivas defenders tried to clear the ball from an onrushing Eddie Robinson, the ball deflected into the net. Robinson, making his second start of the year, was injured on the play and left the match.
Houston goalkeeper Tally Hall finished with four saves on the night but made just one in the second half as the Dynamo held on for the win. The win was the fifth of Hall’s MLS career in his 20th game (5-8-7).
Houston forward Brian Ching came on as a substitute in the 70th minute, his fifth appearance of the season and his first since May 4 due to plantar fasciitis.
Due to injury and national team duty, the Dynamo played without forward Calen Carr (concussion); midfielder Je-Vaughn Watson (Jamaica); and defenders Andre Hainault (Canada) and Jermaine Taylor (Jamaica).
Next Match: Saturday, June 18, 7:30 p.m., Dynamo vs. Columbus Crew, Robertson Stadium
HOUSTON DYNAMO HEAD COACH DOMINIC KINNEAR
the game …
“I am happy that we won. We dug deep fiving up kind of a crazy goal. I thought on the night we probably could have scored more. It’s important sometimes to maybe score that third goal to kill the game off, but we defended OK. Tally [Hall] came out and caught some good ones, and we passed the ball around OK. We were dangerous on set pieces all night long, which is a good thing to see. The music’s playing, we haven’t had that in a while, and I’m pretty pleased.”
the significance of the win …
“If you look at the standings, in the East a few teams are starting to pull away, so it’s a huge win for us tonight with Philadelphia tying today and New York winning last night. For our overall psyche, we can enjoy our Sunday for a change, and then look forward to coming in on Monday. It does relieve a lot of pressure we put on ourselves.”
HOUSTON DYNAMO MIDFIELDER/DEFENDER GEOFF CAMERON
the team’s mentality …
“It’s teamwork. We know if one guy has a mistake, there are other guys around to pick him up, and that was the talk last week in San Jose. We want to get that fighting mentality back, that winning attitude, and I thought we did that tonight.”