The Houston Dynamo finished their third and final meeting with the San Jose Earthquakes, and their former manager Dominic Kinnear, with a victory on the road – their first of the season. The Dynamo fell at Avaya Stadium in the first match between the two sides in a 3-1 defeat, one of the worst performances of the season, and San Jose was able to draw at BBVA Compass Stadium on July 31st.
Interim Head Coach Wade Barrett decided to shake up his roster and formation by re-introducing the 4-2-3-1 with the young Mauro Manotas earning the starting nod over Will Bruin in the lone forward position. David Horst re-joined central defense alongside Raul Rodriguez after serving his 1 game suspension despite Agus earning a Team of the Week honors by Major League Soccer.
San Jose would have a few opportunities in the opening minutes as Quincy Amarikwa could have had a clear shot on goal, but he failed to control the ball inside the 6 yard box. Alberto Quintero would then use his speed to run down the left hand side of the field and create a shot for himself that pulled just wide of goalkeeper Joe Willis and the Dynamo goal.
It would be the Houston Dynamo that would open up the scoring as they capitalized on a turnover around the Earthquakes’ 18 yard box. Cristian Maidana then sent in a low pass into traffic and Ricardo Clark would end up finding the back of the net in his 300th MLS appearance.
Jalil Anibaba would earn a yellow card in the 18th minute for minor contact on Quintero who was making a run following a through pass. The free kick following the foul ended up soaring well over the top of the goal.
In the 22nd minute San Jose would get one of their best moments of the half as Cordell Cato made a brilliant run through the defense and received a ball in a dangerous position. Cato fired a shot, but Dynamo ‘keeper Joe Willis closed the angle well and blocked the shot which went out for a corner kick. San Jose would get a chance off that corner as the ball fell to Darwin Ceren, but his shot went over the top of the net.
The Earthquakes were able to get another shot off following another run by Quintero, who has been giving Houston problems for much of the half, but his shot was blocked by Raul Rodriguez. Amarikwa would get another effort in following a goal kick by David Bingham, but his one-timed shot was not on target.
Houston Dynamo then found themselves in a difficult position following a handball just outside the top of the 18 yard box before halftime. The following free kick by Ceren would curl just outside of the lower corner of the goal.
The Dynamo held onto their 1-0 lead going into halftime despite dropping back a bit and absorbing some of the pressure that San Jose mounted late in the half. Although the Dynamo began the half with a lot of energy, after their early goal they sat in a bit more and allowed San Jose opportunities on goal, none of which were successful.
San Jose started the 2nd half by rushing out of the gates. A turnover by Ricardo Clark in the midfield led to a breakaway chance by Quintero, but instead of taking the opportunity himself he opted to pass the ball which was cleared by the Dynamo. The ball was not free of danger for long as Joe Willis was able to make a pair of crucial saves to stop San Jose from scoring.
Cristian Maidana helped the Dynamo respond by drawing a foul in a dangerous area. From there he would send in a curled free kick to the head of David Horst who smashed the ball into the back of the net to put the visitors up 2-0.
However, San Jose would be able to stop Houston from running away with the game as center back Victor Bernardez put the ball into the Dynamo goal. The Dynamo backline was unorganized from a previous play as Joe Willis had made a save, but the Earthquakes thought the ball had crossed over the line. The heated exchanges likely led to a concentration break for Houston as Bernardez was completely unmarked on the goal.
The substitute Will Bruin nearly helped the Dynamo go up 3-1 in the 83rd minute. Bruin took a pass from Andrew Wenger and easily beat his defender. Bruin sent in a pass across the mouth of goal to Oscar Boniek Garcia whose shot was blocked.
Just before stoppage time the San Jose faithful cried for a penalty in their favor as a Dynamo defender appeared to have committed a handball in the box following a corner kick. However, the center official had already blown his whistle for a foul on Joe Willis, much to the disdain of the Earthquake players and supporters.
The Dynamo would hold onto the win to earn their first 3 points since July 2nd and their first road win since last season which was, coincidentally, at San Jose. Although the team struggled at times in this game, which was a fiercely physical match, they were able to do enough to escape with a win – something they had not done on the road all season.
Next up for the Dynamo is the Seattle Sounders at BBVA Compass Stadium on August 24th at 7:45 PM.
Houston Dynamo: Joe Willis; Jalil Anibaba, Raul Rodriguez, David Horst, Sheanon Williams; Collen Warner, Ricardo Clark; Alex Lima, Cristian Maidana (Andrew Wenger 59’), Oscar Boniek Garcia (Eric Alexander 86’); Mauro Manotas (Will Bruin 64’)
San Jose Earthquakes: David Bingham; Jordan Stewart, Victor Bernardez (Chad Barrett 81’), Marvell Wynne, Cordell Cato; Shea Salinas (Henok Goitom 69’), Anibal Godoy, Darwin Ceren, Alberto Quintero; Quincy Amarikwa, Chris Wondolowski
6’ Ricardo Clark (Houston)
50’ David Horst, assisted by Cristian Maidana (Houston)
54’ Victor Bernardez, assisted by Alberto Quintero (San Jose)
18’ Yellow card to Jalil Anibaba (Houston)
48’ Yellow card to Jordan Stewart (San Jose)
54’ Yellow Card to Joe Willis (Houston)
55’ Yellow card to Victor Bernardez (San Jose)
86’ Yellow card to Boniek Garcia (Houston)