Central Augusta Bloods threw everything but the kitchen sink at reigning premiers South Augusta in a tight and tough affair.
But the experience and confidence of the four-time-premiership Bulldogs shone through as they held on for a 16-point win.
Centrals claimed the first quarter, off to a flyer with goals from Jared Reid and Jack Rigden.
The Dogs went into the second quarter without a major score, but the goal drought didn't last long.
South flipped the script with the elusive Clayton Milera booting three goals, with assistance up front from Jarryd Warren.
While the dogs confidently entered the third stanza with a 14-point lead, it was Centrals' Kieran Roberts who had the answer.
Roberts bagged three and set his side up for a fighting chance in the fourth.
With just five points in it, the final quarter was set up to be a nail-biter.
Centrals got within two points of South with just a few minutes left on the clock.
But a handy goal from Daniel Dohnt and another sneaky score from Milera ensured victory for South Augusta.
Kriston Thompson is a jet and was best on for the second week running, rarely wasting a possession.
Matt Downey gave the Bulldog mosquito-fleet first use while Warren and Billy-Joe Russell were particularly good all day.
For the vanquished, Ryan Watson, Ryan Finlayson, Nick Wedding, Jay Mclachlan and Caleb Williams were best on ground.
Hawks at bottom of Spencer Gulf ladder
The West Augusta Hawks have found themselves at the bottom of the ladder after a disappointing loss to Port Bulldogs in Pirie.
In their first win since August 2019, the Dogs were up-and-about early kicking five of the last six in the first term to lead by three goals.
West well and truly fell asleep at the wheel in the second stanza.
Hayden Warren kicked his second for the day, but the Hawks were overrun by an enthusiastic Dogs outfit.
Out muscled in almost every contest, six goals to one ensured a 51-point lead to Port at half time.
Westies settled and fought back in the third. Nick Collins, Slade Laube and Dylan Cammerano opened their scoring accounts, but the purple resistance broke and the game kicked out again.
Entering the final term with a 40-point deficit, the Hawks managed just one goal off the boot of Kye Davies before the Dogs barked back.
Port kicked the last five goals of the match, securing a 67-point win against a woeful West Augusta.
In a day to forget for Westies, Nic Collins was a shining light and an easy best on ground.
Davies Kayden Bejah, Laube and Michael Curley also found their way to the best players list.