It took just three minutes for referee Ramon Hernandez to put his stamp on this game. Erik Friberg was free on a ball over the defense and had a clear shot at the goal when Hunter Freeman clearly tugged him back. With no defenders between Friberg and the goal, it seemed to be a clear red card violation. Instead Hernandez pulled out a yellow card and awarded the Sounders no more than a free kick from just outside the penalty area.
On the ensuing free kick, Fredy Montero tried to curl a ball over the wall and into the near corner of the goal, but a Dynamo defender was able to head it away. The Dynamo were ultimately able to weather the ensuing attack.
The yellow card was in stark contrast to the red card FC Dallas' Brek Shea was shown in last week's game. In that instance, Shea was one-on-one with a Chicago Fire player at about midfield and was shown red for essentially clashing shoulders. It is this kind of inconsistency that MLS Commissioner Don Garber said he was trying to eliminate from league officials.