Kilmarnock grabbed three precious Scottish Premier League points despite Ross County's dominance in Dingwall.
James Fowler curled a 20-yard shot into the net to give Killie the lead in the second minute.
The home side pressed hard for an equaliser but came up against some fine goalkeeping from Cammy Bell.
The Scotland cap denied Richard Brittain, Sam Morrow and Steffen Wohlfarth to keep his side in sixth place.
Kenny Shiels' side remain level on points with Aberdeen, who have an inferior goal difference. Fourth-place County need one more win to confirm a top-six place.
Kris Boyd made his first start since returning to Killie for a second spell but it was Bell, whose future at Rugby Park remains uncertain, who worked wonders after Fowler's early opener.
There were just 100 seconds on the clock when Rory McKenzie set up the experienced midfielder to send a wonderful strike into the top right-hand corner.
The home side began to dominate and Morrow set up Brittain, but his effort flew past the right-hand angle of the woodwork.
County fans were on their feet when they thought Iain Vigurs had equalised, but the side netting bulged in the wrong direction.
By now Bell was making his presence felt with Brittain, Morrow and Grant Munro among those left frustrated.
Kilmarnock suffered a blow when James Dayton was stretchered off following a clash with Mihael Kovacevic.
Brittain threatened again in first-half injury time but defender Mark O'Hara saved his side with an excellent block.
The second half was just as busy but produced fewer chances.
However, Morrow hit the left post from Martin Scott's through ball.
At the other end Michael Fraser saved an effort from Boyd, who played a spirited and enthusiastic 76 minutes before being replaced by Borja Perez.
Another Killie substitute, Cillian Sheridan, could not keep his effort down as the visitors chased a second goal.
Bell cut out an effort from Morrow who had picked up a clever back-heel from Brittain.
And the keeper capped a fine performance in stoppage time with another superb save from a Wohlfarth header.
- 01 Fraser
- 04 Munro
- 05 Boyd
- 18 Ikonomou
- 22 Kovacevic Booked
- 08 Lawson (Glen - 72' )
- 10 Brittain
- 11 Vigurs (Wohlfarth - 58' )
- 12 Quinn
- 14 Scott (Ross - 72' )
- 17 Morrow
- 28 McCarthy
- 13 Hainault
- 23 Macphee
- 21 Cooper
- 24 Ross
- 15 Wohlfarth
- 20 Glen
- 01 Bell
- 02 Tesselaar
- 04 Fowler
- 25 Barbour (O'Leary - 89' )
- 38 O'Hara
- 88 Sissoko
- 08 Clingan
- 10 Dayton Booked (Sheridan - 45' )
- 09 Gross
- 11 Boyd (Perez - 77' )
- 24 McKenzie
- 17 Letheren
- 03 Hay
- 05 O'Leary
- 19 Ibrahim
- 31 Davidson
- 12 Sheridan
- 15 Perez
Live Text Commentary
Full Time The referee signals the end of the game.90:00 +3:25
The official flags Evangelos Ikonomou offside. Cameron Bell restarts play with the free kick.90:00 +1:41
Gary Glen takes a shot. Cameron Bell makes a save.89:41
Scott Boyd fouled by Borja Perez, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick taken by Richard Brittain.87:53
Cameron Bell takes the free kick.87:53 Substitution
Substitution Ryan O'Leary joins the action as a substitute, replacing Ross Barbour.87:53
Foul by Steven Ross on Mohamadou Sissoko, free kick awarded.86:17
Unfair challenge on Scott Boyd by William Gros results in a free kick. Michael Fraser takes the direct free kick.85:51
Short corner taken by Sammy Clingan.84:52
Borja Perez fouled by Mihael Kovacevic, the ref awards a free kick. Sammy Clingan takes the free kick.84:09
Effort on goal by Cillian Sheridan from just inside the penalty box goes harmlessly over the target.79:15
Foul by Richard Brittain on William Gros, free kick awarded. Jeroen Tesselaar takes the free kick.77:37
Foul by Steffen Wohlfarth on Mohamadou Sissoko, free kick awarded. Cameron Bell restarts play with the free kick.76:35 Substitution
Substitution Borja Perez replaces Kris Boyd.76:09
Corner taken by Richard Brittain from the left by-line played to the near post, William Gros manages to make a clearance.75:42
Kris Boyd gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Grant Munro. Free kick taken by Grant Munro.72:48
Kris Boyd takes a shot. Save by Michael Fraser.71:17
Richard Brittain takes a inswinging corner from the right by-line to the near post, Mohamadou Sissoko makes a clearance.71:17 Substitution
Substitution Steven Ross joins the action as a substitute, replacing Martin Scott.71:17 Substitution
Substitution Gary Glen replaces Paul Lawson.
Shot from inside the six-yard box by Sam Morrow hits the post.68:40
Kris Boyd challenges Grant Munro unfairly and gives away a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Richard Brittain.64:04
Cillian Sheridan challenges Scott Boyd unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick taken by Scott Boyd.62:32
Corner taken by Sammy Clingan from the right by-line, Michael Fraser makes a save.61:40
Shot by Rocco Quinn from outside the box goes high over the target.59:36
Richard Brittain takes a shot. Sammy Clingan gets a block in.57:35
Strike comes in from Cillian Sheridan from the free kick.57:35 Substitution
Substitution Steffen Wohlfarth is brought on as a substitute for Iain Vigurs.57:35
Foul by Paul Lawson on Ross Barbour, free kick awarded.55:37
Martin Scott is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Cameron Bell takes the indirect free kick.54:46
Sam Morrow takes a shot. Cameron Bell makes a save.46:59
Foul by William Gros on Mihael Kovacevic, free kick awarded. Paul Lawson produces a strike on goal direct from the free kick, save by Cameron Bell.46:10
Unfair challenge on Sammy Clingan by Paul Lawson results in a free kick. Direct free kick taken by James Fowler.45:01
The referee gets the second half started.45:00 +3:08 Half time
Half Time The referee blows for half time.45:00 +1:53
Iain Vigurs has an effort at goal from just inside the box that misses to the right of the goal.45:00 +1:03
Inswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Iain Vigurs, save by Cameron Bell.45:00 +0:05
Direct free kick taken by Cillian Sheridan.44:22 Substitution
Substitution Cillian Sheridan joins the action as a substitute, replacing James Dayton.44:22
The referee blows for offside against Sam Morrow.43:31
Paul Lawson takes a shot. Cameron Bell makes a save.42:58
Sam Morrow takes a shot. Cameron Bell makes a save.38:18
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Scott Boyd by Kris Boyd. Paul Lawson takes the free kick.35:44
Inswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Iain Vigurs.34:47
Unfair challenge on Paul Lawson by Sammy Clingan results in a free kick. Paul Lawson restarts play with the free kick.34:02
Effort on goal by Scott Boyd from just inside the area clears the bar.33:30
Inswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Paul Lawson.32:04 Booking
Booking James Dayton is booked.31:47 Booking
Booking Booking for Mihael Kovacevic for dissent.31:12
Foul by Kris Boyd on Grant Munro, free kick awarded. Grant Munro takes the free kick.30:25
Iain Vigurs has shot on goal from just outside the penalty box which goes wide of the right-hand upright.28:46
Corner taken by Iain Vigurs, Cameron Bell makes a save.28:26
Corner taken by Iain Vigurs, Mohamadou Sissoko manages to make a clearance.26:36
Richard Brittain takes a shot. Save made by Cameron Bell. Inswinging corner taken by Paul Lawson, James Dayton manages to make a clearance.23:43
Corner taken right-footed by Paul Lawson from the left by-line, save by Cameron Bell.22:00
Richard Brittain produces a right-footed shot from deep inside the penalty box which goes wide of the right-hand upright.21:22
The official flags Rory McKenzie offside. Free kick taken by Scott Boyd.17:46
Mihael Kovacevic has shot on goal from just outside the penalty box which goes wide of the right-hand upright.17:17
Corner taken by Richard Brittain played to the near post, Ross Barbour makes a clearance.16:39
Evangelos Ikonomou produces a right-footed shot from long range which goes wide right of the goal.15:04
Scott Boyd concedes a free kick for a foul on Kris Boyd. James Fowler restarts play with the free kick.13:03
Iain Vigurs is caught offside. Cameron Bell takes the indirect free kick.11:49
Kris Boyd gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Grant Munro. Michael Fraser takes the direct free kick.10:41
Mohamadou Sissoko gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Sam Morrow. Iain Vigurs has a direct shot on goal from the free kick.5:52
Free kick awarded for a foul by Paul Lawson on Kris Boyd. James Dayton has an effort direct from the free kick.1:37
Jeroen Tesselaar provided the assist for the goal.1:37 Goal scored
Goal! - James Fowler - Ross Co 0 - 1 Kilmarnock A goal is scored by James Fowler from outside the penalty box to the top right corner of the goal. Ross County 0-1 Kilmarnock.0:08
The official flags Rocco Quinn offside. Indirect free kick taken by Cameron Bell.0:00
The match gets underway.
Live data and text provided by our data suppliers