After a long delay to the game in which the field was more a lake than actual grass due to torrential rains that have been pounding the state for weeks, the Houston Dynamo and FC Dallas finally got underway and ultimately split the points.
Referee Kevin Stott made an initial attempt to play the match but it was clear after four minutes that the ball was stopping in the water no matter how much power was put behind it. After nearly two hours to let the rain move on and the field to drain, they resumed the game.
Both teams took some time to adjust to the long delay and slick field but it was FC Dallas who figured out the right play first. Fabian Castillo blazed down the flank, leaving Andrew Wenger far behind him with Jalil Anibaba only just able to keep up. Shown a little bit of space on the goal line, Castillo whipped in a cross that Ryan Hollingshead was able to tap in unmarked in the six yard box just 23 minutes in.
Dallas looked to double their lead quickly but couldn’t take advantage of some early mistakes. Instead it was Houston on the break that nearly scored late in the half when Cristian Maidana dropped a pass to Oscar Garcia who’s volley went wide of the post. Early in the second half, Wenger’s pass towards Will Bruin was blocked. The ball slowly rolled into the path of an on-rushing Ricardo Clark whose one-time volley went right past a diving Chris Seitz.
Filled with confidence after Clark’s golazo, the Dynamo pressed hard to take the lead. A failed clearance from Dallas let Bruin go one-v-one with the goalkeeper and the striker laid off a wonderful pass to an on-rushing Wenger. The initial shot was saved but the ball fell right back at his feet but his one-time shot missed the open net. Later in the half Raul Rodriguez was wide open on a free kick but his header went just outside the post.
With the draw, the Dynamo go into the Copa America break on an undefeated streak of two games (don’t laugh). It’s only the second time this year the team has managed such a feat. It’s also the first time the Dynamo have gotten any points in Dallas since 2011. The teams will meet up August 27 at BBVA Compass Stadium to determine the fate of El Capitan. The series is heavily in the Dynamo’s favor as only a draw would be enough to win the cannon. Anything short of a blowout loss would win them the series, actually.
Despite having a two week break, the players and coaching staff won’t be going on vacation and enjoying the Copa games. They have a US Open Cup match to prepare for on June 15th against San Antonio FC. That game will be at home against the USL side. Three days later they host DC United in league play.
During the break everyone will need to sit down and figure out how exactly the Dynamo will play (and who) under Wade Barrett. While still technically only the assistant coach, Barrett has the respect from the staff and players, with everyone looking to him for answers. Perhaps during the break he’ll be given the interim head coach tag to make things official. Whatever the case, Wade has done a good job to get points on the road in an attempt to turn the season around before it is too late.
Before the Dynamo game, the Houston Dash played a friendly against WPSL side FC Dallas and won 3 – 0. Kealia Ohai, Melissa Henderson and Stephanie Ochs scored for the visitors in their first trip up I-45.