The bottom-of-the-table Mainland Tactix nearly pulled off a huge upset over the ANZ netball premiership pace-setters, the Southern Steel in Dunedin.
The Steel pulled away in the last few minutes of the game to win 61-55.
The last time these two teams met the winless Tactix were thrashed by 49 goals.
This time the Steel started without prolific shooter Jhaniele Fowler-Reid and the Jamaican import was not introduced until the final quarter when the Tactix trailed by just 1 goal, heading into the final spell.
Rookie shooter Jamie Hume played well for the Steel but without Fowler-Reid, the Southerners weren't able to score as quickly as they are accustomed to.
Ellie Bird, who usually plays in the tier below ANZ level, was introduced into goal shoot for the Tactix for the second quarter, and made a strong impact in just her second appearance at this level.
Bird, who stands at 1.94m scored 34 from 39.
Tactix goal defence Zoe Walker picked up the MVP award.