HOUSTON -- The Houston Dynamo were seconds away from their first back-to-back victories of the year, only to see things fall apart just before the final whistle.
"Where to begin?"
Those were the first words from interim head coach Wade Barrett, when asked his thoughts on Wednesday night's 1-1 draw with Seattle Sounders FC -- a match in which Nicolas Lodeiro equalized for the visitors in the 94th minute, after being held in check up to that point.
“Can’t take away any of the disappointment. Every single person is hurt. I am,” Barrett said. “I’ll be asking questions about what we could have done differently. Maybe what I could have done differently in-game. But it comes down to one play. You have to make another play.”
Houston could have made several, actually, missing several chances to extend their lead after second-half sub Andrew Wenger put them up 1-0 with a pretty far-post strike in the 75th minute.
“It looked like spells towards the end where they looked a little bit dead on their feet and we had some good breaks,” Barrett said. “But regardless of what it looks like, it’s still one point.”
Houston can take some measure of solace in the fact that they slowed down one of the hottest teams in the league. The Sounders entered the game on a three-match winning streak and were unbeaten in their last four, but never found a rhythm on Wednesday night.
That started with stopping Lodeiro, who has become Seattle's playmaker since his arrival during the summer transfer window.
“We talked about ways you can limit the ball into him in the first place,” Barrett said. “And when he does get it, what you should expect, and the guys were well prepared for that.”
Midfielder Collen Warner said the whole team was "keyed in" when Lodeiro was on the ball, singling out Ricardo Clark and Alex for their work at keeping Lodeiro in check. But then, just in time to deny Houston all three points, the Uruguayan got free and put in his second goal of the season.
“I thought I was in a good position,” Warner said. “But the cutback was pretty good and he kind dropped off my shoulder."
“I told the guys in the locker room, ‘It’s on us to decide what team shows up on Saturday,’” Barrett said. “And maybe it’s a foregone conclusion that we won’t make the playoffs but if that’s the case, I know which way I want the season to go. I want us to fight and scrap for every single point, for every single minute.”