5 Things: Dash Fall in Inaugural Match

Categories: Soccer, Sports

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Photo by Groovehouse
It would be great to say the entire match had the Dash on the aggressive like this.
Four months to the day that the Houston Dash were officially announced as the first expansion franchise in the National Women's Soccer League, they played their inaugural match against the defending champions Portland Thorns.

The two MLS-owned franchises kicked off the NWSL season at BBVA Compass Stadium on Saturday night. The Thorns (Portland Timbers) finished atop the womens league's maiden season last year. The Dash (Houston Dynamo) are the first expansion club in the league's young history.

It would have been damn right near impossible for the Dash to replicate what the Dynamo did in their Houston christening back in 2006 - especially since the Dynamo were a relocated franchise coming off a Supporters' Shield in 2005 in San Jose. But with a crowd of 8,097 - double the average in the National Women's Soccer League last season - the Dash are on their way to solidifying themselves in the professional women's soccer ranks.

But back to Saturday night, here are five things Hair Balls learned from the Dash's opening kick in Houston.

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Opening Match to Opening Training Camp: 5 Soccer Notes From the Weekend

Categories: Soccer, Sports

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The Dynamo haven't had an impressive opening match since their inaugural season in 2006, and their first championship season.
If the soccer gods could have scripted a way to start the spring break weekend in Houston, this would have been it. A 4-0 rout for the Houston Dynamo in their opening match, followed by a picturesque day for the Houston Dash to open training camp on Monday.

The main event was of course the Dynamo who had three goals in the opening half to easily dispatch the New England Revolution in front of 22,000 plus in attendance here in Houston.

Here are a couple of soccer notes that Hair Balls took from the last couple of days.


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Season Outlook: Dynamo Ride Offense to MLS Cup Playoffs

Categories: Soccer, Sports

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Photo by Danny Lopez
Good or bad, Dynamo are the San Antonio Spurs of MLS.
Every year that Hair Balls does a season preview on the Houston Dynamo, footy aficionados always complain and moan about the same things: why didn't the front office bring in a star player, is this team aging before our eyes, blah, blah, blah.

For starters, the average age on the Dynamo for 2014 is 25 years old. As for the lack of star players - the Dynamo will tell you they play more as a team.

Generally speaking, you have to give the club the benefit of the doubt since the Dynamo have appeared in the Eastern Conference Finals in each of the past three seasons.


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Bill O'Brien Not the Only New Coach in Town as Houston Dash Make First Hire

Categories: Soccer, Sports

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The Dash landed their man to lead their ladies.
The Houston Dash, Houston's new National Women's Soccer League team created on December 13, have only a few short months to get a team together from scratch before their inaugural game in March.

The first order of business was to find a head coach. Monday morning, they officially announced Randy Waldrum was the man to lead them.


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5 Things We Learned as Dynamo Bow Out of MLS Cup Eastern Finals

Categories: Soccer, Sports

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Despite early goal, the Dynamo saw their 2013 campaign come to an end Saturday night.
The third time was apparently the charm for Sporting Kansas City, who finally got over the Houston Dynamo en route to the franchise's second MLS Cup appearance.

And all it took was inspired play by former National teamer Benny Feilhaber and 22-degree weather to keep the Dynamo from reaching their third consecutive MLS Cup Final.

Here are five things we learned from the Orange's MLS Cup Playoff ouster.


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A Serious Question: Why Is Everyone Still Obsessed With the Texans?

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Some dude did this over the Texans.
Earlier this season, some dude paid a fan $200 for his Matt Schaub jersey in the parking lot at Reliant Stadium after a loss. He then took the jersey and burned it. I can only assume that most of the participants were drunk because, if they weren't, it would make me worry for Houstonians in general, and Texans fans specifically.

I listen to sports radio a lot, more than I should and more than pretty much anyone should. I like to claim it is to help me keep up with sports and sports media, something I cover a bit here on this blog. In truth, I enjoy it. But recently, the constant beating of the Texans drum is starting to make me crazy. I'm a flipper, so I listen to a wide range of shows and stations. They all are talking Texans ad nauseam. It's Case Keenum or the offensive line or the coaching staff or the secondary. I get that legitimate news like the release of Ed Reed warrants serious discussion, but Jesus Christ, are you serious, WHO WE SHOULD DRAFT IN APRIL?

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MLS Cup Playoffs: Tired Legs Prove Futile for Both Sides in Scoreless Draw

Categories: Soccer, Sports

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It doesn't get any more low-scoring than a scoreless draw. Good news is that the second leg has to have a goal, if either team wishes to advance to MLS Cup.
The Dynamo faced a familiar foe -- Sporting Kansas City -- in their first leg of the Eastern Conference Finals Saturday night. The sold-out crowd on hand at BBVA Compass Stadium got to witness a rousing 0-0 draw.

Not that the match was devoid of intrigue. The tough, physical battle that mirrored the type of football the Texans play left both teams battered and bruised.

Here are five things we learned from the first leg of the MLS Eastern Conference Final.


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Pole Dancing, Playoff Soccer: Top Five Things to Do in Houston Sports This Weekend

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Playoffs, baby.
"It's the freakin' weekend, baby, I'm about to have me some fun." Oh, R. Kelly, how you cut to the core of me. The weekend is upon us again, kids and children of all ages. That can mean only two things: 1) It's time to put on my expanding pants and eat nachos until I puke and 2) There be sports here!

On a weekend that promises to be mild -- cool even -- and maybe just a little cloudy, there is absolutely no excuse for you to not partake in some of the festivities, activities and general other ivities that are going on this weekend. So, to quote a resident of Shelbyville from The Simpsons, "Get out here, son, there's a doin's a transpirin'."

The best news for you, Pancho, is that there is not only a lot to see and do, but some of it might be downright titillating. Yeah, that's right, TITILLATING! On we go.

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MLS Cup Playoffs: Did You Ever Really Doubt The Dynamo? 2-1 Winners in NYC

Categories: Soccer, Sports

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Photo courtesy of Houston Dynamo
In a true Dynamo-type performance, the Orange pulled off the 2-1 win over the Red Bulls in NYC.
The Houston Dynamo were heavy underdogs going into their second leg of the Eastern Conference Semifinals match against the New York Red Bulls. To make matters worse, Red Bull Arena, is a place where the Dynamo have yet to win -- their last goal was during a 1-1 tie back on April 2, 2011.

Yet anyone that has followed this club knows all to well to not bet against the Dynamo when it's "Noodle Time." And has been the custom here in the Bayou City, the Dynamo prevailed in 2-1 over the Red Bulls in extra time.

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MLS Cup Playoffs: Draw for Dynamo Step in Positive Direction

Categories: Soccer, Sports

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Can the Dynamo carry momentum into the house of horrors that is Red Bull Arena?
Midway through the first half, the New York Red Bulls were up 2-0 on the Dynamo, which looked all too similiar to the previous two encounters at BBVA Compass Stadium.

But something happened in the locker room during halftime. Like in Any Given Sunday, one of the Dynamo assistant coaches got up and gave an Al Pacino-esque speech that put new life into the squad.

The following 45 minutes was a different half, one in which the Dynamo were able to come back and score the equalizer in extra time to send the series back to New York for the second leg tied at two apiece.

Here are five things we took away from the first leg at BBVA.

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