The Houston Dynamo got off to a perfect start against DC United and although they had a briefly worrying spell in the middle of the first half ended up cruising to a 4-1 win at home. It took less than four minutes for them to find the scoresheet, taking advantage of some shoddy defending by DC (this was a theme) to send Will Bruin clean through on Bill Hamid, and the young striker slotted home at the near post with not inconsiderable aplomb.
Although DC midfielder Chris Pontius was denied a clear penalty by referee Jason Anno, the visitors didn't have to wait to long to draw level, Marc Burch smacking home an elaborately worked free-kick from 25 yards after Andrew Hainault was adjudged to have handled. Parity didn't last long, however, and barely had DC's celebrations died down when Will Bruin had the ball in the net again, this time from a header made possible by a pinpoint delivery from Brad Davis.
Houston went into the break with a 2-1 advantage and they ended up extending it with two quickfire goals in the second half. Bruin got his hattrick in the 56th minute after Davis sent in another beuatiful cross, this time from a free kick, and Cam Weaver took advantage of some horrible defending to run clear down the right side and smash past Hamid. The scoreline looked to be frustrating DC's defenders, and Dejan Jakovic lost his cool shortly thereafter, sending Weaver flying off the pitch and under the fourth official's table with a dreadful two-footed lunge that should quite clearly have resulted in a straight red card. He was booked. Fortunately, Weaver was ok to continue.
Weaver would be withdrawn nineteen minutes later, making way for the exciting Sergio Koke to make his MLS debut. Koke ended up partnering Brian Ching (on for Bruin) in an impressive partnership off the bench, but Houston didn't seem particularly keen on padding their lead further, and the game's intensity died down a little towards the end of the match.
It was an impressive performance overall for Houston, who held firm in the face of a dangerous DC United attack and took advantage of their guests' many mistakes. The result takes them to the top of the Eastern conference with one point more than the New York Red Bulls, albeit with one more game players, and DC United fall to seventh on goal differential. If there's a lesson for Ben Olson and his team, it's that the defence needs work, and fast.