Counties-Manukau proved too strong for the Wellington Pride during a 43-13 Farah Palmer Cup win at Jerry Collins Stadium.
The Pride fought hard throughout and managed two tries to Kiri Mei and Angel Uila, but were overpowered in the first half as the visitor's built a 22-5 lead.
Wellington's third win from six matches sets up an important final match of the regular season against Canterbury in Christchurch next Saturday.
Counties' efforts were spearheaded by Black Ferns first five-eighth Victoria Subritzky-Nafatali who scored a hattrick of tries, but it was her pack that laid the foundation.
Counties had two tries from lineout drives in the opening 20 minutes to openside Justine Lavea and loosehead prop Leilani Perese.
Pride prop Raylene Lolo provided some relief when she broke the Counties line and the territorial gain paid off when Mei charged down the clearing kick to put Wellington on the board.
A Hazel Tubic penalty and a try to Subritzky-Nafatali came before the break though and the Pride had a bit mountain to climb in the second half.
Pouring rain only made things tougher for the Pride and a penalty try after the break to Counties effectively sealed the result.
The Pride rallied to gain a penalty to Accacia Te Iwimate, but Subritzky-Nafatali reasserted her side's dominance with her second and third tries in the 69th and 76th minute respectively as the score ballooned out.
Uila had the final say for the Pride after finishing off a nice break by centre Monica Tagoai on the stroke of fulltime.
Counties Manukau 43 (Victoria Subritzky-Nafatali 3, Justine Lavea, Leilani Perese tries; penalty try, Hazel Tubic 4 con, pen) Wellington Pride 13 (Kiri Mei, Angel Uila tries; Accacia Te Iwimate pen). HT: 22-5.
Meanwhile, two tries to Marist St Pats loose forward Matt Peni weren't enough to prevent the men's Wellington Development team from losing 37-24 to Canterbury B in a high scoring curtain raiser at Jerry Collins Stadium.
Canterbury B 37 (Caleb Makene 3, Ben Morris, Jonny Van Der Velde, Nick Hyde tries; Brook Retallick 2 con; Myles Thoroughgood pen) Wellington Development 24 (Matt Peni 2, Piri Paraone, Lester Maulolo tries; Pakai Turia con; Paraone con) HT: 19-12.