Metro tops Houston for third straight 1:0 win
May 9, 2012
Earlier this year, when Metro was winning games -- and at the same time leaking goals left and right -- "Clever" Hans Backe made a statement that he would like his team to get a few 1:0 wins. Well, he is getting his wish. Metro triumphed by the slimmest of margins for the third straight match, topping Houston on an early Kenny Cooper goal. Maybe the "Clever" one is not as befuddled as we sometimes think.
The goal came seven minutes into the match. Mehdi Ballouchy fed Cooper just outside the box. The towering striker got dispossessed, with the ball ending up at the feet of Corey Ashe. The Houston defender carelessly sent a back pass to Tally Hall, but the ever-alert Cooper intercepted it, slamming into the net. It was his eighth of the season, already matching last year's total with Portland.
So, for the third straight match, Metro had an early lead, and for the third straight match, they played to hold on. But it wasn't for a lack of trying, as Backe replaced Ballouchy with Juan Agudelo at the half in an attempt to inject some offense. The peacock-headed youngster did have Metro's best chance of the second half, on a pretty scissor kick from close range that was parried by Hall.
Houston could have scored... a number of times. But the soccer gods seem to be smiling on this unheralded Metro defense. Brad Davis alone had three great chances to score, but the ex-Metro kept missing, including one uncontested header late in the second half. Ryan Meara had to work for his third consecutive shutout. In injury time, Davis fed Calen Carr for a header that looked destined for the top corner, but Meara literally rose for the occasion, then batted down the ball to protect himself for a potential rebound.
So, the streak continues. Hooray for 1:0 wins!
Lineup: Meara, Lade, Holgersson, Ruthven, Barklage, McCarty, Solli, Lindpere, Richards, Ballouchy, Cooper. Subs: Agudelo, Miller, Arteaga.