Ross County manager Derek Adams was delighted to pick up another three points to maintain his side's excellent start to 2013.
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Ivan Sproule scored the only goal as County edged past St Johnstone 1-0 to stretch their unbeaten run to seven games and move up to eighth place in the Clydesdale Bank Premier League.
Saints piled the pressure on County after the interval but the home side held out thanks to some resolute defending.
"I'm delighted with the progress we're making," Adams said.
"We've had a very good season so far and closed the gap between ourselves and the teams in the top half of the table.
"And we've moved ourselves 21 points ahead of Dundee and three points off Inverness, who have had a terrific season.
"We have had nearly the same number of clean sheets as Celtic. We're up there."
He added: "You always start from the back. George Graham will tell you that from his time at Arsenal in the 1980s and 1990s.
"Listen, we've come from the Second Division to the Premier League and these things don't happen overnight. We've been working for five years.
"We've had five years of continuity and a team we've had to build year on year.
"This is not a new thing it's a thing that has been moving along. Nobody should be surprised."
Saints manger, Steve Lomas felt his side deserved something from the match, but admitted County goalkeeper Mark Brown had the measure of them today.
"On every statistic in the game we were miles ahead - possession, corners, shots, territory," he said.
"But it is difficult when you concede the first goal. They are hard to break down, they camp in and get five behind the ball in midfield.
"However, I can't fault my players' effort and their willingness to try and play football the right way on a poor pitch.
"I thought we knocked it about really well, but didn't create as many chances as our possession should have brought.
"Their goalkeeper got the official man of the match award and that tells you something.
"All credit to Ivan Sproule for the goal but we were disappointed with the goal because we knew the first goal would be critical.
"It just lets them camp in and the onus is on you to try and break them down."