Houston Dynamo News

Houston Dynamo FC clinch homefield advantage in Round One of Best-of-3 series with victory in Portland

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Houston Dynamo FC finished the regular season with a 3-1 victory over the Portland Timbers at Providence Park earlier this evening on Decision Day. With the victory the Dynamo finished fourth in the Western Conference with a 14-11-9 (WLD) record and secured homefield advantage in the Round One Best-of-3 series against Real Salt Lake.

Tickets for Houston’s first match in the Audi 2023 MLS Cup Playoffs are now available HERE. The date and time of Round One matches will be announced at a later date.

Today’s victory was the first time the team secured a point from a visit to Providence Park since the 2015 season and this was the first regular season victory for the Dynamo in Portland since the 2011 campaign. Houston’s last victory on the road over the Timbers was in the Audi 2017 MLS Cup Playoffs to secure a berth in the Western Conference Final.

Houston took the lead in the 11th minute after defender Griffin Dorsey forced a clearance at the far post. Captain Hector Herrera took the ensuing corner kick and found Dorsey at the near post for the opening goal of the match. That was Dorsey’s second goal of the season and Herrera’s 16th assist of the league campaign.

The Dynamo doubled their lead in the 49th minute after midfielder Adalberto “Coco” Carrasquilla capitalized on a second ball inside the box, the Panamanian international found the back of the net for the third time this season.

Dorsey put the game on ice in the 72nd minute after the Indiana University product scored his second goal of the night to give Houston the 3-0 advantage late in the game. Herrera dribbled toward the top of the box and found Carrasquilla to his right, the Panamanian international played the ball out wide to Dorsey, who finished with his first professional brace. Herrera tallied his 17th assist of the season in the play and set a new club record for the most assists in a season. The previous record was held by midfielder Brad Davis who finished with 16 assists in 2011.

Portland denied Houston a clean sheet in the 80th minute after forward Felipe Mora was able to get a touch inside the box and sneak his shot just past the reach of Dynamo goalkeeper Steve Clark.

Clark was first called into action in the fifth minute to deny Evander’s free kick at the far post. The ensuing corner kick found Zac McGraw, but his header was off target.

Dynamo forward Amine Bassi just missed the inside of the near post in the 14th minute off a cross from Dorsey.

Midfielder Artur denied Yimmi Chara at the near post in the 19th minute, the Brazilian was well positioned to get a foot on the shot and dribble out of the box to quell the danger.

Houston nearly doubled their lead in the 26th minute after Nelson Quiñónes forced a save at the near post, the rebound fell to Corey Baird, who was ruled offside after finding the back of the net. Artur was key in the buildup following back-to-back recoveries outside the box.

Clark was called into action again in the 30th minute to deny a half-volley from Santiago Moreno at the near post. The Dynamo shot stopper finished with five saves against the Timbers.

Quiñónes forced a save again in the 57th minute with a first-touch effort from the edge of the six yard box.

Houston is one of two MLS clubs that can win two trophies this year and the Dynamo return to the postseason for the first time since the 2017 season. The team won the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup championship last month and also qualified to the 2024 Concacaf Champions Cup. This is the first time the team competes in the regional tournament since 2019. Houston also qualified to the Round of 16 in the inaugural League’s Cup earlier this year, in which the Dynamo defeated perennial Mexican powers CF Pachuca and Santos Laguna.