Blackcaps skipper Kane Williamson enjoyed some much-needed time in the middle, guiding Northern Districts to an early lead in the Plunket Shield four-day competition.
The Knights needed only three of those days to topple Otago by eight wickets in a low-scoring affair at Mt Maunganui's Bay Oval.
Needing 152 runs to win on Friday, Williamson played the leading hand, crafting 83 runs off 120 balls, before he was caught by Jacob Duffy, off the spin bowling of Michael Rippon.
He had put on a 139-run partnership for the second wicket with Henry Cooper, who was unbeaten on 66, when Northern reached their target.
Best of the beaten side was Hamish Rutherford, who stroked the first century of the new domestic season, with 115 runs in the Volts' second innings.
The other two matches around the country were rained out on Day Three, with one more day remaining.
In Nelson, Central Districts batsman Willem Ludick remains poised on 80 not out, with his team scoring 301/7 on the opening day against Canterbury, before rain intervened.
In Wellington, Blackcaps opener Jeet Raval brought up his 15th first-class century, scoring 102 for Auckland, before he was caught by Devon Conway off Jetan Patel on Day Two.
The Aces trail Wellington by 50 runs, with five first-innings wickets still in hand.