Salloi now leads MLS with 23 goals+assists this year, hearing “MVP” chants from the home crowd when he scored his 16th goal of the season to give Sporting a 2-0 lead in the 26th minute.
His goal arrived 10 minutes after Russell extended his goal-scoring streak to five straight matches, converting from the penalty spot after being barged over by Sam Junqua.
Fafa Picault pulled Houston to within a goal five minutes into the second half with a back-post finish off a looping Griffin Dorsey cross. That duo combined six minutes later for what appeared to be Picault’s brace, but the headed finish was negated when Picault was ruled offside.
The momentum quickly shifted back to the hosts when Salloi set up Gadi Kinda on a give-and-go, with Kinda rounding Houston goalkeeper Michael Nelson before putting SKC in front 3-1. Kinda and Salloi also combined on the latter's goal.
The Dynamo didn’t go down without a fight, as Darwin Quintero latched onto a Picault cross to head past Tim Melia from the edge of the six-yard box in the 76th minute. Maxi Urruti’s apparent equalizer 10 minutes from full time was called back after the offside flag was raised.
Following some nervy moments, and an important Melia intervention, Russell put the match away with his second goal on a wonderful solo effort in the 90th minute.
- THE BIG PICTURE: After a disheartening home loss to the Seattle Sounders a week ago, Sporting had a six-point week and scored seven goals to boot to, at least momentarily, move into first place in the West ahead of the Sounders' game later Sunday evening. The Dynamo should be encouraged, at least in the attacking third, with two goals and two others called back for offside. If only they had things cleaned up on the defensive end.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: The Dynamo made a major push after halftime and really threatened Melia. But just when it looked like the visitors might get the equalizer, Russell put the icing on the cake with this great solo effort.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: Picault was good in a losing effort, and Russell’s brace bookended the scoring. But the honors go to Salloi, who was terrific again in a remarkable bounce-back season.