Regan Charles-Cook’s second-half double enabled 10-man Ross County to put further distance between themselves and the relegation zone with a 3-1 home win over Motherwell.
The cinch Premiership game burst into life on the cusp of half-time when Sondre Solholm Johansen scored an own goal.
Motherwell came back strongly at the start of the second half, equalising through Jordan Roberts and seeing the hosts reduced to 10 men when Jordan Tillson was sent off.
However, County were down but not out, and they roared back into life with Charles-Cook’s brace sealing victory.
Motherwell had the more settled side with their starting 11, but both teams showed signs of rustiness early on in their first game back after the winter break.
The flow of play was disrupted early on, with head knocks and injuries forcing several stoppages.
The hosts came off the worse for wear, with both Joe Hungbo and David Cancola needing to be replaced by Dominic Samuel and Tillson respectively.
The hosts broke the deadlock in first-half added-time. Charles-Cook showed his trickery on the left flank to twist past Bevis Mugabi and fire a low cross into the middle, where an off-balance Johansen skewed an attempted clearance into his own net.
The Steelmen came out for the second half on the front foot, and equalised 10 minutes after the restart through Roberts, who picked out the top corner from 25 yards.
Things went from bad to worse for County minutes later, with Tillson shown a red card for a two-footed tackle on the goalscorer.
However, County continued playing as normal with 10 men and they reclaimed the lead in the 73rd minute through Charles-Cook.
Samuel did well to win the ball back inside the visiting half before charging down the right and sending a cross into the middle, which was only half-cleared – allowing Charles-Cook to run on to it and strike past Liam Kelly.
The hosts pulled further ahead in the 79th minute, Charles-Cook saw a cross blocked by a hand and he sent goalkeeper Kelly the wrong way with the subsequent penalty to seal all three points.