The combined Whanganui team sit alone on top of the Manawatu Division 2 Women's Premier grade, but not without a few headaches in the 3-1 win over HSHC Evergreens on Saturday.
Re-matching the team who beat them 2-1 three weeks ago and always present an awkward challenge, Whanganui went behind 1-0 early at Gonville Domain.
A penalty in goal for Whanganui was cleared by the defence but then regathered promptly for Lisa Grant to reserve sweep her shot past the keeper to tie the scores.
Evergreens attacked Whanganui's net with player/coach Colleen Baylis having to scramble back in defence, while Joanna Bell made a couple of big saves off her pads - one of which kept spinning haphazardly in front of the goal-line for a long second before being hacked away.
Whanganui tried to score before the break but put one shot too high, while another was saved by the diving Evergreen keeper and then scrambled out of goal by the other defenders with the home side bearing down on them.
Baylis said after an honest team talk at halftime, Whanganui regrouped to take the lead, and then Kat Benton, who had a good positional match, put the match away with her goal.
"That was the use of a get-out-of-jail-free card," said Baylis
"Things that would normally come off in the first half, didn't come off.
"We said at halftime, 'we know we're better than this, so maybe let's just take a breath'.
"It was the little traps and passes that were not going well, putting us under pressure."
The grade will take a break this weekend with the regional Under 18 tournament in Palmerston North, and then Whanganui will play College Development, who bounced back from recent disappointments to beat HSHC B 5-1 on Saturday.
There are two games left until the playoffs and Baylis said the Evergreens game was a timely reminder they couldn't be complacent, as her team have been short of a training run recently.
"I think we really needed it. It was hard graft, a bit of a draining game."
Tech College Old Boys had no cards to play in their 7-0 hammering by College at Gonville on Saturday, officially ending any hopes of finishing in the Top 4.
College led 4-0 at the break and went on with it in the second stanza, converting their penalty corners on four occasions while also whacking in a couple of strokes.
"The wheels fell off a bit. They just really dominated possession and dictated the game," said TCOB coach Russell Burgess.
"Our boys were slow to react, they didn't climb into the game.
"They didn't stand up on their man until six goals down. Too little too late.
"It's knocked the wind out of our sales.
While TCOB had four youngsters away and lost Josh McDonnell after a blow to the kneecap early on, Burgess said this was little excuse.
Two players getting green cards did not help either.
Callum Wilbur was player of the day, while young Tom Adkins again had a good match.
Zack Newbury created a rare opportunity for himself early on but couldn't convert it, which summed up TCOB's day as they did not get many shots on goal.
"I talked to the College coach. He said it was the best game they've played, but that's because we let them," Burgess said.
Their next game after this weekend's break will be against Palmerston North Boys High School at the Twin Turfs.