Nigel Brooks

Houston Dynamo shift focus to Mobile Mini Sun Cup after intrasquad scrimmage

The Houston Dynamo concluded their third week of preseason activity at Houston Sports Park with an intrasquad scrimmage that finished in a 2-2 draw.

The intrasquad scrimmage was played over two 30-minute periods with one team wearing the orange training top and the other in a gray training top. The orange squad struck early as forward Mauro Manotas dribbled into the box and beat goalkeeper Tyler Deric with a shot toward the far post in the eighth minute.

Manotas doubled his tally two minutes later after he capitalized on a rebound inside the six yard box. Forward Alberth Elis forced a save at the near post but the rebound fell to Manotas for his second goal of the scrimmage.

Midfielder Memo Rodriguez sparked the first of two goals in the second half in the 11th minute off a cross from forward Marlon Hairston. The Dynamo Academy product made contact with the cross after he lunged at the ball near the penalty spot to pull the gray squad within a goal.

Eight minutes later, Rodriguez’ corner kick sparked the equalizer after it fell to midfielder Darwin Cerén at the top of the box. The initial corner kick bounced off defender Erik McCue and rolled to Ceren for the final goal of the scrimmage.

Elis was a constant threat in the first half and with two minutes to go the forward outpaced two defenders near midfield and dribbled more than 20 yards into the box. The forward created space to shoot from a tight angle, but his effort was off target.

Manotas’ early pressure in the first five minutes of the second half generated a one-on-one duel between forward Romell Quioto and goalkeeper Joe Willis. The Honduran international aimed for the top corner of the far post but his effort went over the crossbar.

Following the Dynamo scrimmage, RGV FC competed in a 60-minute intra-squad scrimmage of their own, with one team in gray training tops and the other in neon green pennies. The gray side won 4-1, thanks to three second-half goals after the sides played to a 1-1 draw in the first half-hour.

Midfielder Hector Copete opened the scoring for the gray side in the seventh minute with a blast from long range that rifled past goalkeeper Nico Corti and into the side netting. Forward Carlos Small leveled the match on 25 minutes when he won the ball at the top of the penalty area and buried a left-footed shot.

In the second half, the grays took advantage of mass substitutions on the other side, scoring three times in the final 30 minutes. Forward Andy Cabrera netted the game-winner in the 34th minute after he recovered a loose ball 12 yards from goal and a high right-footed shot inside the left post. Eight minutes later, forward Miguel Padron made it 3-1 when he received a pass atop the six-yard box and finished with his left foot, then midfielder Anibal Cabrera capped things off with a goal off of a feed from Padron in the 48th minute.

Houston Dynamo Intrasquad Scrimmage
Friday, Feb. 2, 2019
Houston Sports Park – Houston, TX

ORANGE: Mauro Manotas (unassisted) 8
ORANGE: Mauro Manotas (unassisted) 10
GRAY: Memo Rodriguez (Marlon Hairston) 41
GRAY: Darwin Ceren (unassisted) 48

Houston Dynamo (Orange): Joe Willis (Tyler Deric 31); DaMarcus Beasley, Alejandro Fuenmayor, Maynor Figueroa (Sam Junqua 31), Chris Duvall; Matías Vera, Juan David Cabezas, Tomás Martínez; Romell Quioto, Mauro Manotas, Alberth Elis

Houston Dynamo (Gray): Tyler Deric (Joe Willis 31); Adam Lundkvist, Sam Junqua (Erik McCue 31), Kevin Garcia, Andrew Samuels; Darwin Cerén, Boniek García, Memo Rodriguez; Tommy McNamara, Ronaldo Peña, Marlon Hairston