With their season hanging in the balance, the Horsham Saints claimed a vital win against arch rival Horsham and retained the Pelican Cup on Sunday afternoon.
It was tough conditions for the second week in a row at Coughlin Park, with heavy rain on Sunday morning contributing to a low-scoring and fiercely contested game of football.
After facing similar conditions last weekend, the Saints seemed to adapt quicker to the wet and established an early lead.
Al McKinnon kicked the first for Horsham but it was swiftly answered by Jacob O'Beirne, who snapped an impressive goal from 45 out in his 100th senior match for the Saints.
Nick Caris - playing just his third Wimmera league game for the season due to his commitment with the Greater Western Victoria Rebels - then booted the Saints' second to give them a one goal buffer that would last until the 15 minute mark of the third term.
Both sides were held goalless in a shortened second quarter, with half-time called early after Horsham's Jordy Burke copped a serious head knock and was stretchered from the field.
The third term saw just one goal kicked, with Horsham's Deek Roberts leveling the scores at 18 apiece and setting up an exciting finish.
Horsham came out firing to start the last, but the Saints defended manfully, with skillful youngsters Angus Gove and Oliver Timms rebounding superbly off half back.
Neither side could break through until the 22nd minute mark, when Horsham skipper Ben Lakin dropped an intercept mark and tackled Caris above the shoulder in the subsequent contest, giving away a free kick.
Caris went back and belted a wobbly punt from 45 through the big sticks, just carrying over the outstretched fingers of Horsham defenders and giving his side the lead.
But in total contrast to the rest of the match, Horsham answered almost immediately through a stellar goal to Rhona Conboy.
Conboy recovered the quickest from a marking contest near the goal-square, pounced on the loose ball, turned his Saints opponent Alexander Mcrae inside out on the boundary line, and snapped a beauty to level the scores.
Caris and the Saints however had the last laugh. Ben Lakin once again gave away a dubious free kick to Caris in a marking contest, this time closer to goal, and the talented youngster calmly kicked the match-winner to breathe life back into the Saints' season.
Horsham Saints coach Luke Fisher knew the win was vital for his side to stay in touch with the top five.
"That was possibly the difference today - it maybe didn't mean as much for them as it did for us," Fisher said.
"We'll play like that every week now. While our season is still alive, we'll keep playing that desperate footy."
The Saints now sit in sixth place, just one win behind Horsham, Stawell and the Southern Mallee Giants, but are significantly worse on percentage, 17 per cent behind Horsham and a whopping 44 per cent behind Stawell.
"Because of our low percentage, it means we have to make up that extra game to get a game ahead of them," Fisher said.
"So every game is super important for us now."
Horsham co-coach Tim Wade said his side had to be better for the remainder of the season.
"We knew it would be a tough match but we just couldn't do it for long enough," Wade said.
"We'll hopefully bounce back. We have to now otherwise we simply won't be there at the end of the year.
"We have to focus on keeping our intensity for four quarters. We have a really good young side, but we can be a bit too up and down."