The Houston Dynamo snapped the nine-game MLS unbeaten streak of the third-place Seattle Sounders with a resounding 3-1 win Saturday night at Robertson Stadium behind two goals from captain Brian Ching and a goal and an assist from Colin Clark. The loss was Seattle’s first in league play since May 25.
With the win, Houston moved into a tie for fourth place in the Eastern Conference with Sporting Kansas City on 27 points, just three behind third-place New York with a game in hand and four behind second-place Philadelphia. The Dynamo travel to Philadelphia next Saturday.
Forward Brian Ching returned from red-card suspension to key the Dynamo victory, notching his 74th and 75th career MLS goals, sixth most among active players. The multi-goal game was Ching’s first since a hat trick on August 21, 2010. Ching also played a part in the first goal, getting a touch to a Geoff Cameron cross in the penalty area before the ball fell to Colin Clark for a close-range finish. Ching added a header in the 23rd minute from a Cameron cross and tapped in a Clark cross in the 71st minute to seal the win. The Dynamo are now unbeaten in the last eight matches Ching has started (3-0-5), dating back to September 2010.
In starting the match, Dynamo midfielder Brad Davis made his club-record 185th career appearance for the Dynamo in all competitions, passing Brian Mullan’s mark of 184. Davis also recorded his league-leading 10th assist of the season, giving him three consecutive seasons with double-digit assists. The assist was the 65th for Davis with the Dynamo in all competitions – he has recorded at least 10 assists in all competitions in five of his six season with Houston.
The win evened the all-time series between the clubs at 3-3-3 and gives Houston the series victory over Seattle this year after the teams tied 1-1 on March 25. The Dynamo have won three consecutive home games against the Sounders, dating back to the 2009 playoffs. The win was just the second multi-goal win by either team in the nine all-time matches.
Seattle’s goal came on a 36th-minute penalty kick from Alvaro Fernandez. Houston goalkeeper Tally Hall was credited with two saves in earning his sixth win of the season. Defenders Bobby Boswell and Hunter Freeman both made their first starts since June 18 on the back line.
Midfielder Adam Moffat, playing his second game with the Dynamo after being acquired on July 21, made his first start for the club in central midfield and was a key figure in the victory alongside Geoff Cameron, who set up two of the three goals with crosses. Moffat cracked four shots, including two that forced saves from Kasey Keller.
The Dynamo improved to 5-1-2 when scoring the first goal and 3-0-2 when leading at halftime.
For Houston, forward Brian Ching appeared in his 180th career MLS game, midfielder Adam Moffat made his home debut while appearing in his 50th career MLS game, and defender Corey Ashe tied a career high set last year with his 19th start of the season.
In addition to Brad Davis, the following Dynamo players reached milestone appearances for the club in all competitions: Corey Ashe and Brian Ching (155), Geoff Cameron (115), Andre Hainault (80), and Tally Hall (40).
The Dynamo played without forward Calen Carr (concussion) and midfielders Danny Cruz (quad) and Je-Vaughn Watson (red card). Forward Will Bruin left the match in the 31st minute with a left knee injury.
Match: Saturday, August 6, 7 p.m. CT, Dynamo at Philadelphia Union, PPL Park,
Next Home Match: Sunday, August 14, 8 p.m., Dynamo vs. Portland Timbers, Robertson Stadium