[MLS PLAYOFFS: Houston-Sporting KC]The Houston Dynamo knocked off the Eastern Conference regular-season champion Sporting Kansas City in the 2011 playoffs, winning, 2-0, in the conference final. Well, the Dynamo, the No. 5 seed in the Eastern Conference, took a long step toward returning to the conference final with a convincing 2-0 win over top seed Sporting Kansas City.
-- Adam Moffat gave the Dynamo the lead in the 18th minute with the goal of the playoffs, a blast from 30 yards that gave SKC keeper Jimmy Nielsen no chance. “It was kinda an icebreaker, a good one," said the Scotsman. Indeed, the game had been a tense affair up until then, and it opened up after that with the Dynamo getting the better of play in midfield, where Moffat was joined by the excellent Ricardo Clark, Brad Davis and Boniek Garcia.
-- The Dynamo put the game away in the 75th minute when Calen Carrburned Frenchman Aurelien Collin, broke down the left wing and slotted the ball to Will Bruin, who scored his third goal in two playoff games.
-- That Dynamo won should be no surprise. It is unbeaten in its last five matches against Sporting KC, dating back to the 2011 Eastern Conference championship. History is also on the Dynamo's side when it comes to the second leg in Kansas City. The last time Sporting Kansas City beat Houston at home was in their inaugural meeting in April 2006.
-- Sporting Kansas City coach Peter Vermes said Houston won the game in the first half with its pressure. “I thought they did a very good job in the first half, every time we won the ball, of just basically getting numbers around us, and either they won the ball or they fouled us,” he said. “They broke the rhythm of the game quickly, and that way they always got 11 players behind the ball, slowed the game down for them every time we won it.”
Second Leg: Wednesday, 9 p.m. ET.
Nov. 4 in Houston
Houston 2 Sporting KC 0.Goals: Moffat (Bruin) 18, Bruin (Carr) 75.
Houston --Hall; Sarkodie, Boswell, Taylor (Hainault 55), Ashe; Garcia, Moffat, Clark, Davis; Carr (Ching 81), Bruin (Weaver 84)
Sporting KC --Nielsen; Sinovic, Besler, Collin, Myers; Julio Cesar, Espinoza (Joseph 77), Zusi; Kamara, Sapong (Dwyer 80), Peterson (Convey 90)