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Drilling down on: Dynamo 1, at San Jose 0

San Jose Earthquakes v Houston Dynamo

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - MARCH 17: Shea Salinas #6 of the San Jose Earthquakes and Brad Davis #11 of the Houston Dynamo go for the ball and at AT&T Park on March 17, 2012 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

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Man of the Match: Quite a few to choose from here, including everyone along the Dynamo back line. Andrew Hainault was particularly strong at right back, but center backs Bobby Boswell and Geoff Cameron, along with backup left back Jermaine Taylor, were all up for the job. All that said, goalkeeper Tally Hall made big stops and dealt competently with lots of tricky, wet services into and around his six-yard box:

Packaged for take away:

  • When it comes to possible outcomes of the Houston Dynamo’s seven-game road trip to open the season, you can already scratch “total disaster” off the list. Dominic Kinnear’s men have won their first two, and that’s a mighty fine start. With perhaps just one more “W,” you could probably even stamp it “success.” And if Houston turns up six more points before the May 12 new facilty opener, that could rightly be labeled “roaring success.”
  • Earthquakes manager Frank Yallop paid a price for going conservative. Fearful of Houston’s tall trees and restart prowess, he left Marvin Chavez on the bench. The result was an attack that was too narrow and completely ineffective over the first 45. Things got better in the second half upon Chavez’s introduction, and thanks to new Colombian midfielder Tressor Moreno.
  • Moreno has a little something. Over 27 minutes he showed vision to go with swell passing and set-up play through the midfield.
  • Brian Ching tends to get hurt a lot, but some of that is because he’s willing to pay the price, OK with inserting himself bravely where most men wouldn’t. It earned Houston a huge penalty kick Saturday. And he paid the price for it (again) by taking a bad walloping from Earthquakes goalkeeper Jon Busch.
  • Brad Davis’ ensuing, 14th minute spot shot needed to be perfect against Busch, who guessed correctly and went to his left. But Davis showed yet again why his dead balls are second best in MLS after a certain, highly paid Englishman wearing the No. 23 jersey in Los Angeles.
  • Generally speaking, Busch certainly has been better than he was Saturday, and definitely needs to be better than he was Saturday.