When native Texan Clint Dempsey first came on the field at BBVA Compass Stadium for warm-ups, and again during pre-game introductions, he was loudly cheered by the Dynamo fans. Dempsey’s return to MLS has been a hot topic for months and with the Nacogdoches born star playing at “home”, fans snapped at the chance to see Dempsey, resulting in a sellout. While the US National Team captain may have been the story, Giles Barnes and the Dynamo quickly spoiled that party.
In a game that very well could have ended 5-4 to either side, Barnes put the Dynamo up early with two first half goals. The Englishman’s first tally came about after some fine work from fellow forward Will Bruin. Bruin kept with a ball in the box as he drifted left of the goal. After keeping possession and pulling Seattle keeper Michael Gspurning out of his net. Bruin turned to find Barnes arriving in the box. Barnes was able to shoot into the nearly empty net and open the scoring.
Barnes second goal could only be described as a howitzer. After collecting the ball some 40 yards out, he stepped forward and let go a shot that found the back of the net on a line. The reactions in the press box summed it fairly well, looks of disbelief. (With Dempsey and the Sounders in town, the press box was at capacity Saturday night.) Barnes second goal put him at 6 on the season and gave him the team lead. At least for a short time.
After Seattle equalized in the second half off a Shalrie Joseph header on a free kick (after a questionable foul call) it was Will Bruin who would equal Barnes’ team lead by netting his 6th. After a great cross fromKofi Sarkodie, Warren Creavalle headed a shot that came back off the crossbar. Brad Davis was able to keep possession and lay the ball back for Bruin who turned and made no mistake, thumping in the Dynamo’s third. In the post game press conference, coach Dominic Kinnear made it a point to mention the great hustle and effort to keep the ball alive that resulted in Barnes first goal and Bruin’s goal.
The Dynamo are now in Trinidad and Tobago for a CONCACAF Champions League match with W Connection tomorrow night. They then travel to Canada this weekend to take on the Montreal Impact in a game with big playoff implications in the hotly contested Eastern Conference. Depth will be tested but the Dynamo know how to handle these busy weeks where they get multiple stamps on their passports. Look for a mostly second team lineup in CCL tomorrow and then the first team back in full force in Montreal. Keep an eye out for new signing Alex Lopez, who was on the bench against Seattle, to make his debut in Orange tomorrow night.
(image courtesy of houstondynamo.com)