Chris Scannell scored for the fourth consecutive game as Cliftonville ground out three points against Carrick Rangers at Solitude.
The Reds' skipper broke the deadlock on six minutes following a smart George McMullan pass and, though Stephen O'Neill powered home a header against his former club to level things before half-time, Scannell popped up again with a quarter of an hour to play — and might even have had a hat-trick had he been able to connect with Stephen Garrett's 77th minute cross.
“Chris has been doing very well recently and really seems to be relishing the competition we have for attacking places,” said boss Tommy Breslin – whose side drew 0-0 with Carndonagh.
“As well as Chris, we also have Stephen Garrett, Rory Donnelly and Joe Gormley pushing to play and it's keeping everybody sharp.
“That's three wins in a row for us now and the focus this week will be making sure we don't take that as a cue to take our foot off the pedal.”
Opposite number Stephen Small was pleased with Carrick's endeavour.
“We're learning with each week and I think you can see we're enjoying the challenges of the Premiership.”