Thanks to late goals from second-half substitutes Tsiki Ntsabeleng and Facundo Quignon, FC Dallas again have Texas Derby bragging rights.

The midfielders’ strikes in the 87th and 93rd minutes, respectively, gave the Toyota Stadium hosts a 2-1 win Saturday over Houston Dynamo FC.

It was FCD’s first such rivalry victory since October 2020, putting them on pace to reclaim El Capitan after it went Houston’s way a season ago. The Toros had won the cannon-inspired trophy six of eight years from 2013-20, and can seal the deal in the July 9 return leg at PNC Stadium.

“I knew that playing in a derby, we have to do it for our supporters,” said Ntsabeleng. “May you give them something to brag about in their city. I'm just happy I got to score my first goal. It's amazing."

Ntsabeleng, a South African native who was the last pick in the first round of the 2022 SuperDraft, bundled home a cross from left back Marco Farfan that Dynamo goalkeeper Steve Clark couldn’t corral. Then Quignon reacted at the back post to poke home a corner kick that Alan Velasco whipped in, both canceling out a 33rd-minute opener from Sebastian Ferreira, Houston’s DP striker.

The result keeps FCD unbeaten at home this year (4W-0L-1D record) and they could sit second in the Western Conference table after the weekend.

“Derbies, right?! This is what a derby brings. It brings emotion, it brings good moments for both teams,” Dallas head coach Nico Estevez said. “Both teams had good players and at the end of the day, I think fans get super excited about it and more when you score at the end.”

Quignon, signed midseason last year from Lanus in his native Argentina, scored his first FCD goal in his 25th appearance for the club. He’s mostly come off the bench this year as Estevez leans heavily on homegrown midfielders, though seized this chance.

“This type of win against Houston, a derby, it means a lot for me this goal and I think for the team too,” Quignon said. “It's a good result. Now, this week can put a lot of energy to get a win away.”

Dallas, with win No. 4, are three victories away from equaling their tally (7) from last year’s Audi MLS Cup Playoffs-less season. They’ve shown quick progress in Estevez’s first campaign, and beating Houston is just proof positive of their overall direction.

“Derbies usually are not pretty,” Estevez said. “It takes a lot of courage and I think we had that mentality today.”