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CONCACAF Champions League: Mauro Manotas Brace Leads Dynamo to CCL Victory

Houston Dynamo win 2-1 (3-1 aggregate) over Guastatoya to advance in CCL.

MLS: Champions League-Guastatoya at Houston Dynamo Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

The Houston Dynamo are heading to the Quarterfinals! On Tuesday night, the Houston Dynamo played CD Guastatoya to a 2-1 result with an overall 3-1 on aggregate to advance in the CONCACAF Champions League.

After a long delay due to rain storms and the ensuing lightening in the area the Houston Dynamo and CD Guastatoya got under way at 9:30 pm CT under soggy conditions with rain continuing during the game.

The first half was a quiet affair with each side getting in a few chances. Houston’s Marlon Hairston created an opportunity in the box in the 18th minute but the Guastatoya defense managed to get in front of the ball each time the Dynamo tried to capitalize. The Dynamo (and their fans) had a huge scare in the 27th minute when Isaac Acuna sent the ball streaking towards goal. The Dynamo got lucky when his shot slammed off the crossbar and away from goal as Joe Willis was unable to do anything to try and stop the shot.

As the half started to wind down DaMarcus Beasley, the lone goal scorer of leg 1, found Ronaldo Pena’s head with the ball. The header from Pena forced a low save from Calderon to prevent the Dynamo from getting on the scoreboard.

The second half was where the excitement lay for those who managed to stay awake to see it.

In the 52nd minute, it was Hairston who again had a chance in front of goal. His header was again saved by Calderon. In the 64th minute the Dynamo were awarded a free kick after Aparicio pulled on the back of the newly subbing Alberth Elis’ jersey. Mayor Figueroa nearly found the net on the free kick but his shot was just wide of the post.

In the 72nd minute, Acuna played a through ball to Navarro whose shot easily found the net to give Guastatoya a 1-0 lead and to tie the series 1-1 on aggregate. Five minutes later Houston’s second half subs would give them back the lead. Alberth Elis caught Guastatoya on the break and after streaking down the sideline he crossed the ball to Maura Manotas whose tap put the ball right past Calderon and into the net. The goal put the game level at 1-1 but Houston held the away goal lead thanks to Beasley’s goal scored in the first game.

In the 84th minute, Boniek Garcia was fouled by Dominguez which awarded the Dynamo a free kick. Mauro Manotas took the free kick which was deflected in for a goal to give Houston a 2-1 lead in the game and a 3-1 lead on aggregate.

It won’t get any easier for the Dynamo in the Quarterfinals as they face Tigres who won 5-1 over Saprissa to advance. The first leg will take place in Houston on March 5. But before they face that test the MLS season gets underway on Saturday and the Dynamo will host Real Salt Lake.