Match ends, Dundee 1, Ross County 4.
Dundee 1-4 Ross County
Alex Schalk scored twice as Scottish Premiership bottom side Ross County beat Dundee to go to within three points of Hamilton Academical.
The visitors took the lead after the break when Davis Keillor-Dunn curled in a dipping shot but Kerr Waddell quickly headed Dundee level.
Schalk pounced on a defensive lapse to score County's second and soon fired their third.
Tim Chow came off the bench to strike the visitors' fourth in stoppage time.
The visitors, who register their first win in 13 matches, started well with Keillor-Dunn's shot from 10 yards tipped over by goalkeeper Elliott Parish.
An even better chance was wasted by David N'Gog after Schalk had created the opportunity by cutting in from the right and releasing the pass. However, from eight yards the former Liverpool striker sent his shot high over when it looked easier to score.
Simon Murray, Dundee's on-loan signing from Hibernian, was keen to show why Neil McCann brought him to Dens Park on transfer deadline day. The striker took a touch before turning and firing wide.
Murray then had the home fans claiming for a penalty when in full flight he went down under the challenge of Liam Fontaine in the box but referee John Beaton correctly ignored the claims.
There was a warm half-time reception for former Dundee captain James McPake, who this week announced his retirement from playing. It probably generated the loudest noise of the day from the home fans.
County started the second half similar to the first and N'Gog had a left-foot strike superbly tipped over by Parish.
But there was nothing the Dundee keeper could do to stop Keillor-Dunn breaking the deadlock. The winger, who had been trying to curtail a constant nose bleed during the first half, sent a brilliant curling right-foot shot from just inside the left edge of the box into the far corner.
The home side responded positively and were back on level terms when Waddell rose highest to head home a Paul McGowan cross from the left.
However, County regained the lead when Schalk took advantage of a misunderstanding involving Lewis Spence and Waddell. The striker nicked the ball then raced away from the Dundee players before shooting past Parish, who despite getting a hand to it could not keep it out.
Three minutes later Schalk scored his second of the afternoon after being found by a neat back-heel by Keillor-Dunn, the forward drilling the ball low into the net.
Jim O'Brien's replacement Chow topped off County's day with a low strike from a difficult angle and the Highlanders now trail Partick Thistle by four points and Dundee by five.
Dundee manager Neil McCann: "I thought we were very poor. I don't think there was a great deal in the first half although I don't think we had played well. We got into decent areas and chose a negative pass rather than a positive one.
"In the second half when we went a goal down, which was a great finish from Keillor-Dunn, we then got ourselves back in the game and it was probably our best spell around that period when I felt we could go on and score another goal.
"But we took another negative pass out in the wide area and then put ourselves under pressure and lost a very sloppy goal. The third goal was a poor one to lose and the game's gone by then.
"I'll take responsibility for a few things today but the players have to take an equal share of that - they're not blameless but neither am I with some of my decisions as well today.
"I'll look at the game again and we'll come in and go through it together as a team. I thought we looked a wee bit flat at times and there was a lack of punch in our play."
Ross County manager Owen Coyle: "We've been on a horrible run, one that's hurt us all.
"We knew that when we started to get players back [from injuries] that we were certainly going to be a good team. I've been repetitive in saying it, but you could see the quality of David N'Gog and, all of a sudden, Alex Schalk can play round about him and Davis Keillor-Dunn, who we've got high hopes for and he's probably got a broken nose but he kept on going.
"We've still got others to come back and there's a lot of work to do. And N'Gog is still only 80% fit.
"We certainly feel we are a stronger team as we move into the business end of the season and what we've got to do is replicate that performance.
"From the first whistle to the last, I thought we were outstanding. If there's any nitpicking it's obviously allowing the equaliser, but I can't say they had too many opportunities at our goal. Dundee are a good side but I actually felt today we passed them off the park.
"We showed real quality, particularly in the final third.
"Our destiny is in our own hands and if we perform like that, it will get us to safety. One swallow doesn't make a summer but it's certainly a good start today because the result was emphatic and that's what we have to take into the next group of games."
- 3HoltSubstituted forEl Bakhtaouiat 90'minutes
- 8KamaraSubstituted forDeaconat 78'minutes
- 29HaberSubstituted forSpenceat 54'minutes
- 20El Bakhtaoui
- 5SouttarBooked at 89mins
- 25O'BrienSubstituted forChowat 71'minutes
- 14N'GogSubstituted forCurranat 78'minutes
- 10SchalkSubstituted forMckayat 82'minutes
- John Beaton
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Dundee 1, Ross County 4.
Corner, Dundee. Conceded by Liam Fontaine.
Attempt blocked. Simon Murray (Dundee) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.
Goal! Dundee 1, Ross County 4. Tim Chow (Ross County) right footed shot from a difficult angle on the right to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Davis Keillor-Dunn.
Substitution, Dundee. Faissal El Bakhtaoui replaces Kevin Holt.
Harry Souttar (Ross County) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Foul by Harry Souttar (Ross County).
Roarie Deacon (Dundee) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Christopher Routis (Ross County) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Darren O'Dea (Dundee).
Substitution, Ross County. Billy McKay replaces Alex Schalk because of an injury.
Mattias Kait (Ross County) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Mark O'Hara (Dundee).
Substitution, Ross County. Craig Curran replaces David N'Gog.
Substitution, Dundee. Roarie Deacon replaces Glen Kamara.
Attempt missed. Christopher Routis (Ross County) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right.
Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Cammy Kerr.
Substitution, Ross County. Tim Chow replaces Jim O'Brien.
Foul by Christopher Routis (Ross County).
Glen Kamara (Dundee) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Alex Schalk (Ross County).
Glen Kamara (Dundee) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Goal! Dundee 1, Ross County 3. Alex Schalk (Ross County) left footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Davis Keillor-Dunn.
Paul McGowan (Dundee) wins a free kick on the right wing.
Foul by Jason Naismith (Ross County).
Goal! Dundee 1, Ross County 2. Alex Schalk (Ross County) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner.
Goal! Dundee 1, Ross County 1. Kerr Waddell (Dundee) header from very close range to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Lewis Spence with a cross.
Corner, Dundee. Conceded by Liam Fontaine.
Darren O'Dea (Dundee) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Dangerous play by David N'Gog (Ross County).
Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Lewis Spence.
Substitution, Dundee. Lewis Spence replaces Marcus Haber.
Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Paul McGowan.
Goal! Dundee 0, Ross County 1. Davis Keillor-Dunn (Ross County) right footed shot from outside the box to the top right corner. Assisted by Jason Naismith.
Corner, Ross County. Conceded by Elliot Parish.
Attempt saved. David N'Gog (Ross County) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top right corner.
Second Half begins Dundee 0, Ross County 0.
First Half ends, Dundee 0, Ross County 0.
Attempt missed. Davis Keillor-Dunn (Ross County) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses the top right corner.