Northern Stars have overcome Southern Steel 53-43 in Dunedin to extend their lead atop the ANZ Premiership.
The Auckland-based side prevailed in a defensive tussle, where linchpin shooters from both sides struggled.
English import Georgia Fisher landed just 22 of her 32 shots at goal, while Stars counterpart Maia Wilson was also well below her season average, sinking 38 of her 47 attempts.
A turning point in the contest came during the third quarter, when Fisher - her side trailing by just two goals - collided with Stars defenders Elle Temu, forcing her out of the game for further assessment of a head injury.
The loss of Fisher proved too much for the Steel to negotiate and the Stars pulled away in the final quarter.
Temu and fellow stars defender Anna Harrison put the clamps on the Steels new shooting combination, while Wilson put on a flawless display of shooting in the final stanza, splashing all 12 of her attempts to seal the Stars victory.
They are now four points clear of crosstown rivals Northern Mystics, who face in a top-of-the-table derby next Sunday.
The Steel will head back to Invercargill to take on Waikato-Bay of Plenty Magic.