USA TODAY Sports Images

Three Things We Learned: Houston Dynamo 1, New York City FC 1

The Houston Dynamo brought back a road point from the first MLS match in the state of Connecticut. Dynamo forward Mauro Manotas scored the tying goal in the 16th minute and Tyler Deric amassed six saves to hold the result.

With the draw, the Dynamo picked up their ninth point on the road. Here are three things we learned:

1. Cabrera all-in on playoff push

Everyone wants to win but not everyone will risk everything to win. Dynamo head coach Wilmer Cabrera did exactly that on Saturday afternoon.

The Dynamo manager was unafraid to make adjustments to better the team’s performance on the road and went with more of a 4-5-1 with two holding midfielders instead of his usual attacking 4-3-3. His decision to rest Erick Torres and Ricardo Clark with an upcoming home game on Wednesday against the LA Galaxy (7:30 p.m. | TICKETS) also paid off.

It was also Cabrera’s 27th different lineup combination in 29 matches this season but it’s one that provided solid results on both the attacking and defensive ends, and could be a blueprint for the team as they continue the final stretch of the regular season.

2. The ageless wonder

Vicente Sánchez has proved his value to this team in this latest stretch of games. His wit earned the Dynamo the point in this match, along with Mauro Manotas’ left-footed finish of course, catching the NYCFC defense off guard with a quick free kick on the edge of the box.

Sánchez had 29 touches in his 65 minutes on the field, buzzing around the attacking third to stimulate the Dynamo attack. To boot, he’s had a hand in four Dynamo goals in the last six matches.

The two upcoming matches in the next week may be the reason why Cabrera subbed the 37-year-old out of Saturday's encounter, but expect to see the Uruguayan continue to play a pivotal role in the coming games.

3. Bravo Tyler Deric

Remember the goalkeeping competition earlier in the year?

There is no doubt Deric has earned his role as the Dynamo’s  No. 1, and his big saves continue to help the team get results. Back in May when the Homegrown product was reintegrated in the starting XI, Cabrera expressed that the job would go to the goalkeeper that could “save” the Dynamo.

His six saves held back a potent New York City offense that included the current league leader in goals in David Villa. It’s efforts like these that secure valuable points during a crucial stretch of the season.

With the team’s destiny in their own hands, you can bet Deric’s hands will have a say in the upcoming Dynamo results.