Juan Pablo Angel's free-kick strike, in what was essentially the final touch of the match, edged the New York Red Bulls past the Houston Dynamo, 2-1, in dramatic fashion on Wednesday night. The winner came after Sinisa Ubiparipovic and Brian Ching had traded goals.
For the third straight game, the Red Bulls held the run of play for much of the match, and this time they capitalized on their chances to stem a four-game losing streak. The Dynamo, however, have now recorded back-to-back losses for the first time this season and lost deep in stoppage time for the second time in five days.
The Red Bulls took an early lead with a 15th-minute goal by Ubiparipovic following a blocked free kick by Angel at the top of the box. After the Houston wall blocked Angel’s attempt, the ball fell to Chris Albright off the rebound from just outside the box, and the right back slotted a pass to Ubiparipovic. Alone in front of goal from six yards out, Ubiparipovic tucked his shot past Pat Onstad for his first goal of the year.
All told, it was a chippy type of game with an uneven flow. There was an early injury substitution in the 15th minute when Dane Richards was replaced by rookie Tony Tchani following a hamstring injury. The first half also saw five yellow cards issued, leading to a total of eight in the match. It was a half clearly dominated by New York, which doubled Houston in shots and shots on goal and held the edge in corner kicks and possession.
Onstad kept Houston in the game with a crucial save in the 36th minute. Angel broke in alone at the top of the penalty area, faked a shot that got Onstad on the ground, and tried to chip the ball over the veteran, but Onstad reached up to palm the ball away.
The second half proved to be a much more even affair.
Houston showed commitment to attacking in the second half, as New York played on its heels early after halftime, having difficulty stringing together passes and succumbing to the quality of Houston’s wide play. Against the run of play, however, New York's John Wolyniec nearly doubled the lead, but his shot from 10 yards out clanged off the post.
Two minutes later, Onstad made a second beautiful save off Angel, who was in alone from a wider angle this time after a nifty through ball from Tchani.
As Houston controlled more and more of the play, the inevitable happened. Controlling the ball down the right flank, Danny Cruz worked a pass to Bobby Boswell from about 30 yards out. Controlling the pass, Boswell had plenty of space and time to whip a cross into the box where he found a loosely marked Ching near the penalty spot. Ching brought the ball down with his chest and powered in a right-footed shot past goalkeeper Bouna Coundoul to tie the game in the 65th minute.
Houston substitute Dominic Oduro had a good chance in the 89th minute, but Coundoul reacted well to save his shot at the near post. More than three minutes into extra time, following a foul on Conor Chinn, Angel stepped up to a 30-yard free kick. He curled a shot toward the left-hand post that eluded Onstad but struck the post, then hit the unfortunate goalkeeper in the back before deflecting over the line.
For the Red Bulls, it was a fitting end to a match that they controlled for vast portions, ending the team’s four game slide in league play. For the Dynamo, it was heartbreak on a night when they appeared to have pulled out a road point despite struggling through the first half.
Houston Dynamo (5-6-1) vs. New York Red Bulls (6-5-0)
June 02, 2010 –- Red Bull Arena, Harrison NJ
NY -- Sinisa Ubiparipovic 1 (Chris Albright 1) 15
HOU -- Brian Ching 2 (Bobby Boswell 1) 65
NY -- Juan Pablo Angel (unassisted) 94+
Houston Dynamo -- Pat Onstad, Richard Mulrooney, Eddie Robinson, Bobby Boswell, Andrew Hainault, Brian Mullan (Corey Ashe 46), Lovel Palmer, Brad Davis, Danny Cruz, Brian Ching (Joseph Ngwenya 81), Cam Weaver (Dominic Oduro 61).
Substitutes Not Used: Tally Hall, Ryan Cochrane, Craig Waibel, Luis Angel Landin.
New York Red Bulls -- Bouna Coundoul, Chris Albright, Mike Petke, Tim Ream, Danleigh Borman, Dane Richards (Tony Tchani 15), Seth Stammler, Joel Lindpere (Jeremy Hall 47), Sinisa Ubiparipovic, John Wolyniec (Conor Chinn 83), Juan Pablo Angel.
Substitutes Not Used: Greg Sutton, Luke Sassano, Irving Garcia, Juan Agudelo.
HOU -- Richard Mulrooney (caution; Tactical Foul) 13
HOU -- Eddie Robinson (caution; Reckless Foul) 28
NY -- Danleigh Borman (caution; Reckless Foul) 32
HOU -- Brian Mullan (caution; Tactical Foul) 40
NY -- Chris Albright (caution; Reckless Foul) 40
NY -- Jeremy Hall (caution; Reckless Foul) 59
NY -- Mike Petke (caution; Reckless Tackle) 75
HOU -- Lovel Palmer (caution; Reckless Foul) 89
Referee: Hilario Grajeda
Referee's Assistants: Greg Barkey; Jeff Muschik
4th official: Mark Geiger
Weather: Partly Cloudy-and-78-degrees
All statistics contained in this boxscore are unofficial