HOUSTON — Bongokuhle Hlongwane scored the deciding goal, and Minnesota United extended its unbeaten streak to six by beating the Houston Dynamo 2-1 on Saturday night.
Hlongwane’ scored in the 72nd minute to put United (10-8-4) ahead 2-0. Niko Hansen assisted the goal. Hlongwane's play against Houston earned praise from head coach Adrian Heath.
“He’s got a lot to learn still and he knows that. If he keeps working as hard as he does, keeps listening to what people are telling him, keeps running forward, keeps trying to get in the right spots, which he has been doing," Heath said after the game. "If he can start bringing goals to his game in the manner that say Robin Lod does when he plays there then when you get in that between seven and twelve goals a season from a wide area then that would be huge for us moving forward.”
Minnesota has five wins and a draw since a 2-1 defeat at Miami on June 25.
United also got one goal from Franco Fragapane, in first-half stoppage time.
The Dynamo’s (7-11-4) goal was scored by Fafà Picault.
The Dynamo outshot United 22-9, with four shots on goal compared to three by Minnesota.
Dayne St. Clair saved three of the four shots he faced for United. Steve Clark saved one of the three shots he faced for the Dynamo.
With Saturday night's win, Minnesota has beaten an MLS opponent four straight times for the first time in club history, according to the team.
These teams take to the pitch again Saturday, with United hosting the Portland Timbers while the Dynamo visit the Philadelphia Union.
"I’m proud of my guys, I thought Nabi Kibunguchy was super solid tonight [in his first MLS start]," Heath said. "In a pretty tough place to play. And I’m super excited that Bongi [Bongokuhle Hlongwane] got his first goal. We’ve got a group of hardworking players who leave it all out there for each other.”
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