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HOUSTON (AP) -- Nate Jaqua scored three goals and Corey Ashe had three assists as the Houston Dynamo solidified its lead in the MLS' Western Conference standings with a 4-3 win over Real Salt Lake on Saturday night.
Houston (12-7-6) remained three points ahead of FC Dallas, which won 2-0 against Toronto on Saturday. Dallas went ahead of idle Chivas USA with its win.
Jaqua had Houston's second hat trick of the year, first since Brad Davis recorded three goals against Chivas USA on June 21.
Jaqua scored in the 6th, 48th and 57th minutes, with the last giving Houston a 4-1 lead before Salt Lake (4-12-6) rallied with two late goals.
Carey Talley scored in the 69th minute before South Lake, Texas native Kyle Brown score his first career goal, unassisted, in the 82nd.
Houston entered the game with just one win in its previous seven matches (1-4-2), including consecutive 1-1 draws in the last two.
Real Salt Lake, however, had won two straight and three of five overall and remained four points ahead of last-place Los Angeles in the West.
Eddie Robinson gave the Dynamo a 2-1 lead in the first half, when he sent a header past Nick Rimando in the 28th minute. Richard Mulrooney sent a free kick toward the net and Robinson surprised Real Salt Lake with his first goal of the season.
Jaqua opened the scoring in the 6th minute when he one-timed a pass from Corey Ashe converting the first shot of the match.
But Real Salt Lake tied the game just 12 minutes later, when Fabian Espindola slipped by the defense and fired a shot between the near post and Pat Onstad.
It looked like the shot would sail wide, but the ball hit the far post and deflected into the net, tying the game at 1-1.
(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.) APTV-09-08-07 2222MDT