The Houston Dynamo celebrate after Bobby Boswell (second from left) scores in a 2-0 CONCACAF Champions League win over visiting DIRECTV on September 25, 2013. (Photo: Bob Levey)
HOUSTON – The Houston Dynamo got a goal in each half to defeat DIRECTV W Connection 2-0 in a CONCACAF Champions League match at BBVA Compass Stadium on Wednesday.
The victory lifted Houston, which has won three straight games in all competitions, to the Group 1 summit with seven points from three matches, one ahead of Arabe Unido.
The table toppers will square off on October 24 in Panama to determine which of the two progresses to the quarterfinals. The Dynamo can advance with only a draw, while Arabe needs a win.
W Connection, which finished its Champions League campaign with one point, extended its winless streak in the competition to eight games and has not scored in 284-minutes.
Johnson gave the Dynamo a 1-0 lead in the 39th minute, when the Jamaican forward took a touch around onrushing W Connection defender Joao Jordao on the left side of the box and blistered a shot into the opposite side netting from 16 yards.
Boswell gave Houston a needed insurance goal in the 51st minute. Unmarked at the near post, the defender easily headed Alexander Lopez’s corner off Jordao and into the net for his third career CCL tally.
W Connection, which played the Dynamo to a 0-0 draw in Port of Spain on August 20, used five men in the back and proved difficult to break down defensively in the opening half hour.
The Savonetta Boys nearly took the lead in the 18th minute, but Mekeil Williams lobbed a 24-yard free kick over the Houston wall and just over the crossbar.
While Houston had a possession advantage, W Connection had the more dangerous scoring opportunities.
In the 27th minute, Silvio Spann unleashed a low, hard shot from distance that forced goalkeeper Tyler Deric into a full dive, but the attempt bent wide of the fart post.
In the 32nd minute, Cam Weaver, who struck for a brace in a 2-1 win over Arabe Unido in Houston’s last Champions League encounter, had a pair of chances. His initial shot was parried away by Figueroa and his attempt following the ensuing corner kick glanced off the crossbar.
Two minutes later, Kofi Sarkodie made a penetrating run into the box from the right and had Figueroa beat, but his shot toward the far post was cleared off the line by Jordao.
W Connection nearly pulled a goal back on the hour mark when Jamal Clarence, who came on for Spann at halftime, raced behind the Houston defense. Deric, however, did well to get off his line quickly and clear away the danger.