Houston Dynamo welcomed back former coach Dominic Kinnear to BBVA Compass Stadium as San Jose Earthquakes took on the Dynamo on Sunday night. The result went as expected, a draw, but with more attacking than anticipated as the match ended 1-1.
There was nearly an Olympico from Dynamo midfielder Collen Warner as his corner was swung in to the box and beat everyone. That ball was only denied when San Jose defender Marvell Wynne cleared it off the line, with some ease, clearing it to safety.
A counter attack gave San Jose their first good opportunity as a run down the right setup Quincy Amarikwa. That allowed him to run on goal and his shot beat Dynamo keeper, Joe Willis, but went just wide of goal.
After a foul on San Jose striker Chris Wondolowski, the Earthquakes were given a golden opportunity just outside the box. That allowed a free-kick, taken by midfielder Simon Dawkins, but his effort was just wide.
From the goalkick Houston launched an attack, which very nearly caught out former San Antonio (and current San Jose) goalkeeper David Bingham. He rushed out of his area, and was caught by a bounce, which he just did enough to control and clear, with Dynamo striker Will Bruin threatening.
Dynamo went agonizingly close in the 35th minute when an elaborate corner kick routine allowed Dynamo to get a cross in. That ball was headed down for Bruin whose shot was deflected over the bar, and the following corner came to naught.
Houston were the better side throughout the first half but late in the half, San Jose attacked, and had a corner which went just wide. From the goalkick the ball fell back to San Jose, allowing them to play Wondolowski clean through but his effort was well saved.
Dynamo’s domination paid off in the second minute of stoppage time as the hosts took a lead in to the break. It all came from a great run from striker Alex who ran in to the box well, beating his defender and cut inside, shooting across the face and into the back of the net.
Houston came out from the break determined to double their lead, going for it from the opening whistle. Bruin was able to run on goal but his run was timed poorly, being flagged for offside but he missed the chance anyway.
Just before the hour mark, San Jose hit back after a long cross from the right found Wondolowski just inside the box. That allowed Wondolowski to hit an impressive volley which left Willis with no chance.
The match became a real end-to-end affair following that goal but despite that, chances were rare as both sides struggled to really break down the defense. The two defenses were able to cover well, making changes hard for their opposition.
Poor control from Houston Dynamo midfielder Ricardo Clark let his team down in the 77th minute after Dynamo packed the box. The short chip came in to Clark but his attempted chest was too heavy, going away from him and allowing San Jose to clear.
By contrast to that control, Dynamo midfielder Boniek Garcia used a stunning first touch to create an opportunity in the 83rd minute. Garcia’s touch allowed him to cut inside his man and create space for a shot, but he sent his effort well over the bar, keeping the match scoreless.
All Photos: Eric Guzman, San Antonio Soccer News Head Photographer