The Southern Steel remain unbeaten in the ANZ netball premiership, but were pushed by second place Waikato Bay of Plenty Magic in the latest round of competition.
After losing to the Steel by 13 goals five weeks ago, the Magic came a lot closer second time around, but eventually succumbed by four goals with the Steel winning 65-61.
The Steel led 16-12 at the end of the first quarter but the Magic had cut the lead to just one at half time to trail 32-31.
However the Steel gradually took control through a defining third quarter.
The connection between shooters Te Paea Selby-Rickit and Jhaniele Fowler-Reid stood out while at the other end of the court, ever-impressive defender Jane Watson was an effective spoiler as the Steel continued to apply the pressure and pushed out to a 52-46 lead at three-quarter time.
It was a deficit the Magic were unable to overcome giving the Steel their ninth straight win of the season.