The Houston Dynamo fell to FC Dallas 1-0 in the third-place game of the Disney Pro Soccer Classic on Saturday. Brek Shea’s ninth-minute penalty kick was the difference as Houston lost its final match of the preseason. The Dynamo will now prepare for their MLS regular season opener on March 11 against Chivas USA at The Home Depot Center.
FC Dallas turned an early opportunity into the game’s only goal. Seven minutes after the opening whistle, Andre Hainault attempted to clear a bouncing ball in the Houston penalty area. As Hainault tried to clear, Blas Perez tried to knock the ball into the net. After the two opponents made contact with each other, a penalty was awarded to Dallas.
Brek Shea, a starter in the U.S. national team’s victory over Italy on Wednesday, slotted the spot kick to the opposite side of Dynamo goalkeeper Tally Hall’s dive for the game-winning goal.
Hainault had an excellent opportunity for redemption three minutes later. Brad Davis took a free kick near the corner flag and curled in a well-placed cross to the center of the Dallas penalty area. Hainault struck the header well from six yards, but it bounced off the pitch and over the crossbar.
In the 22nd minute, Hall kept the Dynamo in the match with a great save on Shea. Fabian Castillo used a quick feed to spring Shea through the Houston defense. Shea was alone, about 10 yards from goal, and he tried to slip a low shot to the left side of the net. Hall lunged to his right and used his right hand to stop the shot for a fantastic save.
Less than a minute later, Castillo had a clear chance from eight yards, but his shot stayed over the bar.
After few chances in the first half, Houston came out with more energy after half time and created more opportunities. In the 49th minute, Adam Moffat played a clever one-touch from the top of the Dallas penalty area to Davis on the left side of the goal. Davis dribbled past Zach Lloyd, who fouled Davis from behind and the Dynamo were awarded a penalty.
Davis stepped to the spot and took the penalty to his right, but Dallas goalkeeper Kevin Hartman dove to his left and pinned the ball to the front of the post and kept it out for the important save.
The Dynamo continued to gain more control of the game and pushed for the equalizer. In the 54th minute, Davis played a short corner to Moffat, who struck a shot from the edge of the area low and hard to the near post, but Hartman was there for the save.
After a series of substitutions, Houston continued to create chances on the attack. In the 68th minute Je-Vaughn Watson played a ball from the right flank across the middle of the area, where Davis was racing towards the near post. Davis tried to chip the charging Hartman, but his shot hit the crossbar, and Dallas was able to clear before Calen Carr could bury the rebound.
Davis was involved in another scoring chance in the 90th minute. The midfielder took a set piece 25 yards from goal and curled in a quality service in front of the goal. Cam Weaver rose and won the header but directed it wide of the net.
The Dynamo finished the tournament 0-2-2 and will return to Houston on Sunday for final preparations for the regular season.
Houston Dynamo vs. FC Dallas
March 3, 2012 – ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex
Disney Pro Soccer Classic - Consolation Match
FC Dallas – Brek Shea 9 (penalty)
DAL – Andrew Jacobsen 45
HOU – Je-Vaughn Watson 52
HOU – Bobby Boswell 52
DAL – Juan Carlos Enriquez 78
HOU – Boswell 88 (red card)
Houston Dynamo – Tally Hall; Andre Hainault (Kofi Sarkodie 79), Bobby Boswell, Geoff Cameron, Corey Ashe (Oscar Recio 85); Colin Clark (Luiz Camargo 61), Adam Moffat, Je-Vaughn Watson (Youssouf Hersi 77), Brad Davis; Will Bruin (Calen Carr 67), Macoumba Kandji (Cam Weaver 61).
FC Dallas – Kevin Hartman; Zach Loyd, Hernan Pertuz, Ugo Ihemelu, Jair Benitez (Geoffrey Tulasne 46); Fabian Castillo (53’ Andrew Wiedeman), Daniel Hernandez (59’ Bobby Warshaw), Andrew Jacobson (59’ Victor Ulloa), Carlos Rodriguez; Brek Shea (Ruben Luna 46, Bryan Leyva 87), Blas Perez (Juan Carlos Enriquez 77).