Houston Dynamo 2, Minnesota United FC 1 | 2017 MLS Match Recap
An Alberth Elis goal in the 69th minute, followed by Honduran strike partner Romell Quioto notching an 85th-minute goal, delivered the Houston Dynamo to a 2-1 victory over Minnesota United FC on Saturday night. The win pushed Houston back over the playoff line, at one point over their in-state rivals with three matches to go for each team.
Though the Hondurans got the Dynamo onto the scoreboard, it was second-half sub Vicente Sanchez who put them in position to score with brilliant assists.
Minnesota kept it close to the end, though, with late-game sub Sam Nicholson scoring a stoppage-time goal off a great solo run along the 18.
- FROM ZEROES TO HEROES: It looked as if the Forever Orange squad might be forever 0-0 in a first half that saw all 10 goal chances miss the target. Quioto and Elis tried to set each other up during first-half attempts that went awry. Quioto found himself in a one-on-one situation with keeper Bobby Shuttleworth by getting on the end of an outstanding goal kick, yet couldn't convert. Alex, too, had some additional chances in the opening 45 by making solid runs into the box.
- SALVOS FOR CALVO: Though it was in a losing effort, Costa Rican international Francisco Calvo made two excellent goal-saving plays in the match, including a first-half block that thwarted a hard-charging Alex, and a timely tackle close to the hour mark that stopped a Quioto run triggered by a Mauro Manotas through-ball. It wasn't a perfect night for Calvo, though — Elis beat Calvo to Sanchez's laser of a pass to head in the goal that broke the deadlock.
- WHO WAS THAT MASKED MAN?: Elis's opening goal was punctuated by one of the best celebrations of the year (or any year). Drawing on his "Panther"/"La Panterita" nickname, Elis ran from the goalmouth to the bench, grabbed a Black Panther mask (from the Marvel character inspiring an upcoming movie, but haunting your local Halloween pop-up store), put it on, and struck a pose, getting a yellow card for his trouble. (Not to be outdone, Quioto also celebrated his goal, by taking off his jersey and holding it up to the assembled end line fans; there was no movie tie-in, but it was enough to earn him a celebration yellow.)
Elis was issued a yellow card, presumably for starting Halloween celebrations in September. #HOUvMIN— Wakanda Panthers (@HoustonDynamo) October 1, 2017