VANCOUVER, BC – Whitecaps FC (10W-9L-4D) defeated Houston Dynamo (10W-8L-7D) 2-1 in a crucial home match at BC Place on Saturday, courtesy of goals by Fredy Montero and Yordy Reyna.
It was a gritty first 15 minutes at BC Place for both teams, but eventually the ‘Caps offensive engine really got going.
With Houston favoring a more counter-attacking style, Vancouver were able to dictate the pace of the match in the early minutes. Half chances were the only real threatening moments for Vancouver before a penalty kick broke the deadlock.
Peruvian Yordy Reyna was taken down just inside the penalty box following a poor challenge by Houston midfielder Boniek Garcia in the 17th minute of the match. With referee Drew Fischer pointing to the spot immediately, ‘Caps striker Fredy Montero stepped up to beat Houston keeper Tyler Deric with a low-driven strike to find the back of the net for his team-leading 10th goal of the season.
Not to be outdone, ‘Caps keeper David Ousted made sure to mark his return between the sticks in spectacular fashion when he denied Honduran international Romell Quioto’s direct free kick attempt with a highlight-reel save in the 28th minute to keep the ‘Caps in the lead.
The ‘Caps would then extend their advantage in the 32nd minute with a piece of individual brilliance by Reyna.
With pressure to win the ball and a quick layoff from Montero in the attacking third, Reyna took matters into his own hands with a world-class curling strike that nestled into the top corner, doubling the score line.
But Houston made sure to keep the match tight, reducing the deficit by only a goal in the 51st minute when Quioto finally did manage to beat Ousted on a give-and-go play with Houston forward Mauro Manotas to make it 2-1.
The Dynamo would get one last chance at salvaging a road point late into stoppage time on a close-range free kick just outside the penalty box but the strike from substitute Tomás Martínez would not get past the ‘Caps wall in front of him.
Whitecaps FC now look to continue their playoff push in a midweek Cascadia match against Seattle Sounders FC at BC Place this Wednesday, August 23 before traveling to Florida to face Eastern Conference Orlando City SC on Saturday, August 26.