- The Washington Times - Sunday, May 27, 2007

Christian Gomez scored a goal and set up another by Ben Olsen as D.C. United beat the MLS champion Houston Dynamo 2-1 at RFK Stadium in front of 18,078.

With the win, United (3-3-1, 10 points) extended its unbeaten streak to four games and won its third straight game after a slow start to the season.

In the fourth minute, Gomez was awarded a free kick after being pulled down by Ricardo Clark 30 yards from the goal. Last season’s MLS MVP converted the kick perfectly, curving the ball over Houston’s four-man defensive wall, high into the net and to the right of diving Dynamo goalie Pat Onstad.

“It was the first option of the game,” Gomez said. “We got the free kick and I just hit it and it went in.”

It was Gomez’s third goal of the season, giving United its earliest lead of the season.

“Christian is going to find his way,” United coach Tom Soehn said. “He’s the MVP of the league for a reason and he’s here on our team for a reason and you are starting to see signs. He’s sending our guys through. He’s going to a big piece down the line.”

In the 27th minute, Then Gomez threaded a pass to the on-rushing Olsen on the left flank, and Olsen, wearing the captain’s armband, coolly fired a low shot past Onstad.

“When I got the ball I heard Benny calling for the ball and I turned and I knew he was there,” Gomez said. “I just but the ball behind the defender and made a great finish.”

It was Olsen’s first goal of the season and his 22nd all-time for United in 183 games.

“Christian just puts it on a platter the right weight, the right stride and all I have to do is put it in,” Olsen said.

Houston battled back in the second half, but United maintained its lead when goalie Troy Perkins stopped Brian Ching’s close-range shot. Perkins later pulled off a brilliant save to stop Dwayne De Rosario’s penalty kick in the 70th minute but couldn’t do the same against the Canadian national team star.

Guy-Roland Kpene, making his second start in place of United’s missing striker Jaime Moreno who played yesterday with the Bolivian national team nearly extended the lead when his shot from Gomez’s pass just sailed wide of Onstad’s left post.

“The team is playing better, Saturday after Saturday,” Gomez said. “We are recovering that mystic that characterizes D.C. United.”

Kpene later leveled Onstad to earn a yellow card. He wasn’t done with the goalie as he nearly got around the keeper just after the break. Kpene was replaced by Nicholas Addlery in the 71st minute.

Notes The Dynamo will meet President Bush on Tuesday at the White House, where Houston will leave the 2006 MLS Cup.

Kpene, who joined United as a developmental player, has been given a senior roster spot, taking the place of Jamil Walker, who suffered a season-ending injury.

Moreno played the first 45 minutes for Bolivia in its 1-1 tie with Ireland in an exhibition game at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass., yesterday.

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