Motherwell kept up the pressure on fourth-placed Aberdeen with a hard-fought win away to Ross County.
John Sutton opened the scoring for Motherwell after 15 minutes, striking from 18 yards past Ross County keeper Michael Fraser.
Ten minutes later, Keith Lasley's shot was palmed away but Sutton was on hand to head home before Melvin De Leeuw's header reduced the deficit.
County pressed until the dying minutes for a leveller that never arrived.
The Highland side lost only 11 league fixtures last season, but are already into double figures this term, having now suffered their tenth defeat in 15 top-flight games.
Motherwell, who came into the game having scored just three goals in their last seven games, found the net inside the first 15 minutes.
A simple ball to the centrally-placed Sutton saw him turn and shoot from 20 yards, his strike picking up a deflection as it evaded Fraser.
The goal came within a minute of the first meaningful action of the match after Richard Brittain had struck the crossbar with a 26-yard free kick that looked to have beaten debutant goalkeeper Dan Twardzik.
The home side struggled to find a rhythm and soon found themselves two goals down.
In the 27th minute Henri Anier saw a hard hit shot parried by Fraser but unluckily for the keeper the ball spun wickedly up into the air and Sutton was left with a simple jumping header to net his and Motherwell's second.
Derek Adams responded by withdrawing Marc Klok, who had been playing in a holding midfield role, and introduced striker Kevin Luckassen to play alongside De Leeuw.
It was that partnership that combined to get County back into the match 16 minutes into the second half.
The home side had shown more purpose and both Brittain and Quinn had chances prior to the goal.
Luckassen showed great persistence to get his cross in from the right and De Leeuw muscled his way to the ball first to head them back into the match.
The equaliser for Ross County appeared to arrive in 67 minutes when Brian McLean powerfully headed in a Graham Carey corner but referee Crawford Allan had spotted an infringement and the goal was ruled out.
Motherwell were rarely a threat in the second half, which was all the more surprising given their first-half play, and they had to hold out in the end for the win.
Gary Glen with his first touch failed to connect correctly, one of several chances that Ross County wasted in the last 15 minutes of the match as they sought to earn a point.
Instead, their lack of composure in the penalty box saw them pass up chances and instead of earning a point, they suffered their third successive home loss.
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