The Houston Dynamo continued their strong run of form with a comprehensive 3-0 win over Minnesota United FC this evening at BBVA Stadium. The win was Houston’s first at home this season and second in a row, following a 5-2 win at Sporting Kansas City last Tuesday.
A goal from forward Darwin Quintero, who joined the Dynamo in the offseason from Minnesota, proved to be the winning margin, while a second-half brace by new addition Ari Lassiter put the game away late. Lassiter became just the second player in Dynamo history to score two or more goals on his debut, joining Brian Ching who scored four in the Dynamo’s first-ever match in 2006. At the other end of the pitch, goalkeeper Marko Marić notched his second consecutive home shutout and picked up his second win with the Club.
The win improved Houston’s record to 2-2-4 on the year; and the Dynamo have now picked up points in six of their eight matches under first-year head coach Tab Ramos.
The Dynamo took the lead in the 28th minute through a perfectly-placed shot by Quintero. Midfielder Memo Rodriguez created the chance when he collected a pass from forward Christian Ramirez and skipped past three defenders at the top of the box before sliding to poke a pass to Quintero on the right of goal. The Colombian rifled his first touch along the grass, slipping it past Minnesota goalkeeper Greg Ranjitsingh’s diving effort.
Lassiter, acquired by the Dynamo on loan from CD Alajualense in Costa Rica last month, made his debut for the Club in the 55th minute when he came on for Ramirez. Lassiter opened his account for the Dynamo 10 minutes later when he tapped in a centering pass from forward Alberth Elis. Midfielder Darwin Cerén sprung Elis free with a long pass down the line, allowing the speedster to outrace Minnesota’s back line. With Elis drawing the attention of multiple defenders, Lassiter snuck in unmarked for the easy tap-in.
Lassiter’s dream start continued four minutes later when he combined with Elis once again to make it 3-0. Elis took the ball outside the penalty area and drew a pair of defenders before laying the ball off. Lassiter took a touch and placed a left-footed shot just inside the left post to complete a brace in his first 15 minutes of action.
Lassiter wasn’t the only player to make his Dynamo debut on the evening, as midfielder Wilfried Zahibo, who joined the team via trade from New England, came on for captain Matías Vera in the 82nd minute to help see out the final few minutes.
Tonight’s match marked the first of four contests over an 11-day span for the Dynamo. They’ll remain at home for the next one as they host longtime rivals Sporting Kansas City at BBVA Stadium Saturday night at 7 p.m. That contest will be closed to fans but will be televised live throughout the Greater Houston area on QuestTEXAS Ch. 55 and will be heard over the radio on Univision Radio 1010 AM in Spanish.