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MLS Cup Playoffs Begin As Houston Beats Chicago

The weather is turning cold, the playoffs are beginning and that is the sign for the Houston Dynamo’s to start winning games.

A goal in each half by forward Will Bruin gave the Dynamo a 2-1 upset victory over the Chicago Fire in the Eastern Conference Knockout Round match at Toyota Park on Wednesday night. It was the first road win in more than three months for the reigning Eastern Conference champions.

The No. 5-seeded Dynamo advance to meet top-seeded Sporting Kansas City in the Eastern Conference Semifinals, with the first leg to be played on Sunday afternoon at BBVA Compass Stadium in Houston.

Bruin’s first goal came on a free near-post header in the 12th minute on a corner kick from teammate Brad Davis. Then, just 19 seconds after halftime, he got his brace on a blistering diagonal shot after he was sprung on the heels of a costly Chicago turnover.

Aside from a momentary flash of hope on Alex’s 83rd minute goal for Chicago, the rest of the match was an exercise in game management by the Dynamo, who enjoyed the better possession and succeeded in thwarting Chicago’s desire to launch quick counterattacks.

It was a disappointing end to the season for the Fire, who just a month ago were in position to seize first place in the East. Wednesday night’s loss marked their fourth defeat in their final six competitive matches to close out their 2012 campaign.