The Rapids had the first scoring opportunity in the third minute. A Terry Cooke corner kick was cleared out to Dan Gargan who took a shot that was blocked out to Kyle Beckerman. The Maryland native then crossed the ball to Nicolas Hernandez whose cross was headed wide by Clint Mathis.
Another header for the Rapids went wide in the 18th minute. Cooke’s cross found an open Martins but the Brazilian’s header missed.
The Rapids had the majority of the pressure in the early part of the game and had a total of 7 corner kicks taken by the midway point of the first half.
Hernandez finally broke the deadlock in the 35th minute. The Argentine collected a pass from Martins at the top of the penalty area after a give-and-go. Hernandez let loose a powerful low shot that caromed into the net off of Pat Onstad’s post.
The Rapids had an apparent goal taken off the board in first half stoppage time. Martins was called for a push in the box right as defender Kelly Gray’s clearance went into his own net.
Dwayne De Rosario nearly leveled the score in the 55th minute. A poor trap in the Rapids penalty area fell to the Canadian but his shot went wide of Joe Cannon’s net.
Hernandez continued the Rapids attack on the net in the 68th minute. After receiving a pass from Mathis he dribbled expertly past three defenders in an amazing display of skill but his shot was blocked by a fourth orange shirt who came sliding in.
Cannon with help from his crossbar kept the game level in the 71st minute. Brad Davis came down the left side and unleashed a bullet that the Colorado ‘keeper got just enough of to deflect it off the woodwork.
Cannon shone again in the 87th minute when he blocked an onslaught of Dynamo opportunities while the Rapids played down a man as Gargan lay injured on the ground nearby.
The Rapids with the help of Cannon’s saves and some expert ball movement around the field managed to withstand Houston’s late intense pressure and hold the game at 1-0 through four minutes of stoppage time to win the game.
The Rapids almost had a second goal in the waning moments as Cooke and Hernandez combined well on the wing to send Mathis through free in the box but just as he was going to shoot Vaughn blew the whistle for the end of the game and the ball flew into the empty net.
The Rapids will have two days to train before they head to Texas where they will take on FC Dallas in a 6 p.m. (MT) kickoff at Pizza Hut Park this Saturday in their next league match.
Colorado Rapids Man of the Match: Nicolas Hernandez
COL – Hernandez (Martins) 35
Colorado Rapids – Joe Cannon Dan Gargan Pablo Mastroeni (Chris Wingert 77 Hunter Freeman 90) Aitor Karanka Terry Cooke Daniel Wasson Kyle Beckerman Clint Mathis Eric Denton Nicolas Hernandez Thiago Martins (Jacob Peterson 85)
Substitutes Not Used: Matt Jordan Dedi Ben-Dayan Colin Clark Fabrice Noel
Houston Dynam Pat Onstad Kelly Gray (Stuart Holden 81) Ryan Cochrane Eddie Robinson Craig Waibel (Kevin Goldthwaite 81) Brian Mullan Ricardo Clark Dwayne De Rosario Brad Davis Alejandro Moreno Brian Ching
Substitutes Not Used: Zach Wells Chris Aloisi Patrick Ianni Chris Wondolowski Ronald Cerritos
COL – Martins (Caution) 12
HOU – De Rosario (Caution) 38
COL – Mastroeni (Caution) 56
HOU – Davis (Caution) 74
HOU – Goldthwaite (Caution) 90+
Referee: Terry Vaughn
Referee's Assts: Kermit Quisenberry; Jose Corro
4th Official: Scott McCaslin