David Wotherspoon's 83rd minute winner gave Saints a massive three points against Kilmarnock at McDiarmid Park this afternoon.
Ali McCann had Tommy Wright's men off to a flyer after 7 minutes when he turned home an excellent cross from Scott Tanser but a controversial penalty scored by Chris Burke sent the sides in level at the break.
The win puts Saints 8th in the table level on points with 7th place Kilmarnock and five points clear of the 11th place relegation play-off.
Following the midweek defeat to Livingston at the Tony Macaroni Arena, Saints boss Tommy Wright made changes to his starting XI and his formation for the visit of Killie.
Opting for a back three of Jason Kerr, Liam Gordon and Callum Booth, the Manager brought Scott Tanser, Chris Kane and David Wotherspoon into the side in place of Anthony Ralston, Liam Craig and the injured Michael O'Halloran.
After a positive start on the front foot, Saints took an early lead courtesy of Ali McCann's second goal of the season.
The young midfielder made a great run into the box to get on the end of a wonderful ball by Scott Tanser to give his side the dream start at McDiarmid Park.
Saints continued to dominate the early stages but the match would soon be all square courtesy of a controversial penalty decision.
Callum Booth was penalised for a foul on Chris Burke which looked to have taken place outside the area but referee Alan Muir pointed to the spot.
Burke himself stepped up to send the ball into the back of the net to make it 1-1.
It was almost 1-2 to the visitors moments later if not for some great goalkeeping by Saints number one Zander Clark.
David Wotherspoon was booked for a foul at the edge of the area and Chris Burke stepped up again 20-yards-out but Zander made a fingertip save to deny the Killie veteran a second.
And Zander was at it again minutes later clawing away a goalbound header as Killie enjoyed their best period in the match.
Saints weathered the storm and as the first half wore on began to retake control of the match without creating many clear cut chances before the break.
Tommy Wright was forced into a change at half-time with Drey Wright coming off with a hamstring injury and being replaced by Anthony Ralston.
The early stages of the second half were cagey with neither side really taking control of the match.
Callum Hendry replaced Chris Kane on the hour mark as Saints went searching for a winner.
And about ten minutes after coming on Hendry had a long range effort from a free-kick excellently saved by Koprivec.
His effort looked destined for the top corner before being denied by the Slovenian 'keeper.
Inside the final ten minutes, Stevie May did well down the flank before clipping in a cross to a dangerous area but there were no Saints players there to take advantage.
The winner would come moments later though, courtesy of David Wotherspoon.
The impressive Scott Tanser drove down the left before putting in a great cross for Callum Hendry. The striker battled with the Killie defender in the box before the ball broke to Spoony who side-footed a volley from the edge of the area beyond Koprivec to make it 2-1.
Saints held on without being put under any real pressure to take an important three points and move up one place to 8th in the Ladbrokes Premiership table.
SAINTS: Zander Clark, Jason Kerr (c), Liam Gordon, Callum Booth, Drey Wright (Anthony Ralston 45), Scott Tanser, Jason Holt, Ali McCann, David Wotherspoon, Chris Kane (Callum Hendry 60), Stevie May
UNUSED SUBS: Elliott Parish, Wallace Duffy, Liam Craig, Danny Swanson, Jordan Northcott
SCORERS: Ali McCann (7), David Wotherspoon (83)
KILMARNOCK: Jan Koprivec, Stephen O'Donnell, Stuart Findlay, Dario Del Fabro, Niko Hamalainen, Gary Dicker (c), Alan Power, Greg Kiltie, Chris Burke, Harry Bunn (Eamonn Brophy 72), Nicke Kabamba
UNUSED SUBS: Laurentiu Branescu, Connor Johnson, Ross Millen, Iain Wilson, Mohammed El Makrini, Harvey St Clair
SCORERS: Chris Burke (22)
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