for this game

Holden leads shorthanded Dynamo past Earthquakes

Oct 16, 2008 - 4:33 AM By Jeremy Rakes PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

HOUSTON (Ticker) -- After the San Jose Earthquakes managed to tie the match, Stuart Holden came to the rescue and gave the Houston Dynamo a comfortable lead atop the Western Conference.

Holden's second goal of the game came in the third minute of stoppage time as Houston recorded a 2-1 victory over San Jose on Wednesday night at Robertson Stadium.

The win gives Houston (12-5-11) a five-point lead over Chivas USA (12-10-6) in the Western Conference with two games remaining. The two-time defending MLS Cup champion Dynamo can clinch the conference title on Saturday with a win against the Los Angeles Galaxy.

"If we had only gotten one point tonight, I think you would have seen a lot different locker room," Houston coach Dominic Kinnear said. "And that is because of the way they scored. Now if they would have pulled us apart and had scored a great goal, then we'd be well, that is the way the game has kind of been going and we have only been playing with 10 men."

San Jose (7-12-9) is all but eliminated from playoff contention as it trails three teams by six points with two matches left.

"I think the guys battled their hardest tonight," San Jose coach Frank Yallop said. "We had a good effort in a difficult place to come and play, although we had an extra guy for 80 minutes. I think the Dynamo did a great job of packing it in and making it difficult for us.

"We're obviously disappointed with the result. Having a chance to maybe get three points tonight, and we let it slip, really, so that was hard."

Holden scored the game-winning goal off a rebound of Nate Jaqua's shot in the 93rd minute. Late substitute Brian Mullan sent a pass ahead of Jaqua into the penalty area and Jaqua blasted a shot from the left side of the box off the left post. With San Jose goalkeeper Joe Cannon out of position, Holden easily knocked home the ball to give Houston the lead and the win.

"I thought we played well tonight from one to 11," Holden said. "It was unfortunate we had to play a man down, but considering all circumstances, the guys put in a great effort and gave 120 percent all over the field - and we were fortunate to get the three points in the end."

San Jose had several chances to score off a corner after the goal, but Houston's Eddie Robinson redeemed himself for mistakes made earlier in the game by clearing it as the match ended.

Holden gave Houston a 1-0 lead in the sixth minute when he got a rebound off Kei Kamara's sliding attempt that hit off the right post. Geoff Cameron crossed it to Kamara in the middle of the box and, after Kamara hit the post, Holden fired a point-blank shot into the net with Cannon on the ground.

With the 1-0 lead, the Dynamo were put at an early disadvantage in the 11th minute when Kamara was red-carded by referee Jair Marrufo for an elbow to the throat of San Jose defender Nick Garcia. Garcia said after the game Kamara spit on him and kicked him.

After being outplayed for the majority of the match, Scott Sealy knotted the score at 1-1 in the 68th minute, capitalizing on a Dynamo mistake. Robinson's attempted pass back to goalkeeper Pat Onstad was too short and Onstad had to come off his line and make a sliding kick to beat San Jose's Darren Huckerby to the ball.

The clearance attempt by Onstad, however, went straight to Sealy, who nailed a kick from the right side about 25 yards out into an empty net.

"What can you say, for 80 minutes with 10 men, they had two shots from 30 yards out and the mistake I made was all they got," Robinson said. "I think the determination our 11 guys showed out there, with Dwayne (De Rosario), Brad (Davis) and (Brian) Mullan out resting, and we still put on that kind of performance, I think that says something."

The contest was a makeup game from September 20, which was postponed due to Hurricane Ike.

  • MLS
    SAN JOSE 1

    Oct 15 11:01 PM

    SAN JOSE 1
    HOUSTON GOAL: Stuart Holden in the 93rd minute

    Earthquakes 1, Dynamo 2  End of Reg.Oct 15 11:01 PM
  • 87
    RUWTbot Added 55 roots (Close Finish)

    Earthquakes 1, Dynamo 1  2nd - 86'Oct 15 10:51 PM
  • 32
    RUWTbot Added 32 roots (Close Finish)

    Earthquakes 1, Dynamo 1  2nd - 80'Oct 15 10:46 PM

    SAN JOSE 1
    SAN JOSE GOAL: Scott Sealy in the 68th minute

    Earthquakes 1, Dynamo 1  2nd - 68'Oct 15 10:34 PM

  • MLS
    SAN JOSE 0

    Oct 15 9:59 PM

    SAN JOSE 0
    HOUSTON GOAL: Stuart Holden in the 6th minute

    Earthquakes 0, Dynamo 1  1st - 6'Oct 15 9:14 PM