Black Leopards confirmed their dominance over Jomo Cosmos when they rose from a goal down to triumph 3-2 in a National First Division (NFD) Inland Stream match at Malamulele Stadium on Saturday.
Leopards pipped Cosmos 2-0 during their Absa Premiership match last season to send them straight to the NFD before joining them after faltering at the play-offs.
Leopards made Jomo Sono's troops to taste their first defeat this season after five matches.
Lethola Mofokeng's interchange with Thabiso Hlalele resulted in a goal in the 14th minute when Lazarus Kaimbi's grass-cutter beat Leopards' keeper Postnet Omony.
Leopards had to substitute the injured keeper with Ephraim Tjihonge in the 31st minute and later brought Grant Lungu on for Mongezi Bobe in the 42nd minute.
Cosmos controlled most of the first stanza yet failed to convert with Hlalele and Mofokeng the main culprits.
Lungu levelled the score in the 59th.
Eric Ramavhale, Khethowakhe Masuku and Jabulani "Streetwise" Maluleke outmuscled Cosmos' midfield of Bamuza Sono, Lucky Mhlathe and Diarra Gaoussou to give Leopards enough chances to attack.
Substitute, Mahlatse Maake's first touch in his second minute in the match put Leopards in the lead on 72 minutes and five minutes later Thabo "Ledimo" Mongalo made it 3-1.
Cosmos' substitute Collen Makgopela reduced the margin to 2-3 in the 89th.
Elsewhere Booler Tshabalala's goal gave Winners Park victory over Mpumalanga Black Aces, while Jacob "Cellular" Sakala steered Dynamos to their first victory of the season when they beat Witbank Spurs 2-0 through Pollen Maringa's brace.
In the Coastal Stream Ikapa Sporting moved to top spot when they drew 2-all with Nathi Lions, while FC Cape Town lost 0-2 to Durban Stars.
Leopards 3, Cosmos 2; FC AK 1, Pretoria University 0; Winners 1, Aces 0; Dynamos 2, Spurs 0.
Stars 2, FC Cape Town 0; Hanover Park 3, Carara Kicks 2; Sporting 2, Lions 2; Vasco da Gama 3, African Warriors 0. - Sowetan