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Union fall to Dallas; winless streak at 3

FRISCO, Texas - The Union had a chance to take over first place in the Eastern Conference when they played Dallas on Saturday night.

Peter Nowak and the Union are winless in their last three games after Saturday's loss to FC Dallas. (David Maialetti/Staff file photo)
Peter Nowak and the Union are winless in their last three games after Saturday's loss to FC Dallas. (David Maialetti/Staff file photo)Read more

FRISCO, Texas - The Union had a chance to take over first place in the Eastern Conference when they played Dallas on Saturday night.

But the Union left Pizza Hut Park with a 2-0 loss, extending their winless streak to three games (0-2-1) and remaining a point behind New York and New England.

The Union (4-3-2) were in an unaccustomed place early, trailing by 2-0 before halftime. They had not allowed more than one goal in any game this season - just four total over the first eight contests.

The biggest downside going into the final 45 minutes was that the Union also have not scored twice in any game, let alone in a half.

It wasn't as if they didn't have chances.

"From this situation we had in the first 20 or 25 minutes, we should be up 3-0," said Union team manager Peter Nowak.

In the 13th minute, Brian Carroll sent a crossing pass from the right side into the middle, but Amobi Okugo shot high over the net. A minute later, Carroll took a pass in front. His shot was blocked past the end line, but the Union couldn't do anything with the first, or any, of their five corner kicks in the match.

Danny Mwanga, who had Philadelphia's only shot on goal, took responsibility for a missed opportunity when the ball eluded him near the goal.

"I had a chance in the first half if I tighten my run better. I'll know to do that next time," he said.

Nowak said, "We have to go back to work, not only offensively but also defensively. After that good 25 minutes we slowed up and let them get two easy goals."

Dallas (5-3-2) scored its first goal in the 29th minute when 18-year-old Fabian Castillo maneuvered past Carlos Valdes to pull goalie Faryd Mondragon over to the left goalpost. Castillo then passed into the middle to Brek Shea, who tapped the ball in for an easy goal.

The second score came during the 43d minute. From near midfield, Marvin Chavez put a pass on to the right foot of Jackson Goncalves, about knee high. Goncalves then booted the ball from the right side over Mondragon to Castillo coming down the middle. He headed the ball in for the 2-0 lead.

The Union's aggressive first-half play resulted in yellow cards against Mwanga and Carroll for reckless tackles. The Union had nine fouls to six for Dallas.

Texas heat was not a factor on a cool evening with the game-time temperature at 70 degrees. If the Union were tired, playing for the third time in nine days - well, Dallas was playing its third match in eight days.

"When we have a very busy week with all that travel, we're going to refresh our lineup," Nowak said after making three changes. Okugo, Roger Torres, and Justin Mapp started in place of Kyle Nakazawa, Gabriel Farfan, and Carlos Ruiz, with Ruiz returning in the second half.