Soccer

Clark scores in second half as Dynamo blank Union

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The Canadian Press
7/6/2013 11:39:59 PM
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HOUSTON -- The Houston Dynamo scored for the first time in a month and won for the first time in nearly two months Saturday, lifting a weight off their collective shoulders.

Ricardo Clark scored in the 59th minute and the Houston Dynamo snapped a seven-game winless streak with a 1-0 win over the Philadelphia Union on Saturday night.

"We know what's been going on," Houston coach Dominic Kinnear said. "We have been peppered with questions over the last couple weeks about not winning. This is a proud group, and we get a little annoyed by it. ... Any time you win -- whether it is a great win or the teams played poorly and you get a little lucky -- you walk off the field with a little enjoyment out of it."

Houston (7-6-5) had not won since beating D.C. United 4-0 on May 8.

"It's nice to get one," said Houston goalkeeper Tally Hall, who finished with three saves. "Sometimes it is not pretty in the end. I don't think we finished the game great. You look at it, it's three points and we haven't had that in a while. We walk away with smiles on our faces."

Clark also put an end to Houston's franchise record 388-minute scoreless streak when he headed in Jermaine Taylor's cross from the left sideline from 8 yards out.

Clark said Taylor's service on the goal was right where he needed it to be, and he was trying to make the most of it.

"It's three points," Clark said. "At the end of the day, that is all we wanted. We could have finished a couple more chances."

Houston had not scored since Warren Creavalle's goal at Columbus on June 1. The Dynamo's previous record scoreless streak was 273 minutes in May 2007.

"It just gives us our confidence and gets us back to our winning ways," Houston forward Giles Barnes said. "It gets us back up the table and puts pressure on everyone on top of us. Obviously, when you start scoring and obviously we had more chances, so the mood was a lot different."

Philadelphia (7-6-6) had its five-game unbeaten streak snapped, dropping its first game since losing 5-3 at Montreal on May 25.

"You're going to win some, and you're going to lose some, especially when you try to play in these kind of conditions, third game in eight days, it's just tough," Philadelphia coach John Hackworth said. "So, thought our team put out a fantastic effort, just wasn't there tonight."

Philadelphia's best chance came before halftime when Hall stopped Aaron Wheeler's shot from the left box and Conor Casey's rebound attempt went high.

Casey said the Union did not establish what they wanted to do, and in the end, they didn't do enough to get a result.

"Today just wasn't a very good day in general, but I think the past month we've played pretty consistent," Casey said. "So, just get back to what we were doing and take it from there."

Ricardo Clark (Photo: The Canadian Press)

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(Photo: The Canadian Press)
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