Darlington Nagbe and Brandon Vazquez scored two minutes apart in the first half and Josef Martinez added a pair of second-half goals as Atlanta United cruised to a 5-0 victory Wednesday over the visiting Houston Dynamo, who played with 10 men for almost the entire game.
Martinez scored his 14th and 15th of the season to move into sole possession of second place on MLS' season goal-scoring list. Atlanta United (10-8-3, 33 points) rebounded from a 2-1 defeat at Seattle on Sunday to improve to 7-1-3 at home this season, tied for most home victories in the Eastern Conference.
Dynamo forward Alberth Elis was shown a red card in sixth minute, ending his day. He was initially given a yellow yard for aggressive contact with Atlanta United's Leandro Gonzalez Pirez before getting a red card for bumping referee Christopher Penso.
Despite a number of injuries that left Frank de Boer with a short bench, Atlanta United still opened the game with midfielder Gonzalo "Pity" Martinez as a reserve -- a likely nod to a run of three games in eight days including a matchup Sunday at home against D.C. United. He entered in the 74th minute for Vazquez.
One of the Atlanta United bench players was midfielder Mo Adams, whom the team acquired earlier Wednesday from the Chicago Fire for $100,000 in general allocation money. Adams entered for Nagbe in the 77th minute.
Nagbe's goal in the 27th minute, off a centering pass from Julian Gressel, was his first in 43 games with Atlanta United after the midfielder was acquired last season in a trade with the Portland Timbers.
Vazquez delivered his second goal of the season off a header directly in front of the Dynamo goal, beating goalkeeper Tyler Deric. Dion Pereira's left-footed centering pass was deflected toward Vazquez by Dynamo defender Aljaz Struna.
Josef Martinez scored in the 60th and 79th minutes. He got his first on a header off a long pass from Gressel. He outmaneuvered the Dynamo defense on his second, while Deric fell to the ground while trying to stay in front of the ball.
Gressel added to his two assists with a goal in the 88th minute, his fourth of the season.
The Dynamo (8-9-3, 27 points) had just one shot on target to Atlanta United's eight, and they came away with their eighth consecutive road defeat, falling to 1-8-0 away from Houston this season.