Goalkeeper David Marshall produced an inspired performance as Hibernian defeated Aberdeen 2-0 at Easter Road to make it three wins on the spin.
Striker Dylan Vente set the hosts on their way with his first goal since September before Will Fish’s second-half header sealed the points and tightened the Edinburgh side’s grip on fifth spot in the cinch Premiership.
Hibs were indebted to Marshall who pulled off a string of vital blocks, including a penalty save from Bojan Miovski as the frustrated Dons remained 10th in the table, just three points off the bottom.
Home boss Nick Montgomery made two tweaks to the side that started last weekend’s 2-1 win at Dundee as Rory Whittaker and Lewis Stevenson replaced Jordan Obita and the suspended Lewis Miller.
There were eight changes to the Aberdeen side that started Thursday’s Europa Conference League dead-rubber away to HJK Helsinki, with goalkeeper Kelle Roos plus centre-backs Slobodan Rubezic and Richard Jensen the only players to remain in the team that kicked off the 2-2 draw in Finland.
After a bright start from Hibs, Aberdeen grew into the game and Ester Sokler threatened twice from inside in the box, with his angled shot deflected behind before he sent an acrobatic attempt that went harmlessly wide.
The Dons were caught out in the 17th minute, however, as the hosts went ahead with some direct football. Rubezic failed to deal with a long ball up the centre of the pitch from Marshall, and Martin Boyle ran clear before drawing Roos and squaring it into the path of Vente, who slammed the ball into the empty net.
After a VAR check for a possible offside, the goal stood.
Hibs almost doubled their lead on the half-hour when Jair Tavares saw a shot from just inside the box charged down by Stefan Gartenmann after Hibs did well to create an opening.
Aberdeen tried to summon a response and both Jamie McGrath and Miovski were denied by brilliant saves from Marshall within the space of five minutes.
At the other end, Fish headed just wide from a Joe Newell free-kick moments before the interval.
Aberdeen dominated the early stages of the second half and spurned some golden opportunities to draw level.
Miovski had an effort ruled out following a foul on Marshall in the build-up before James McGarry blazed the ball over from inside the box after being played in on the left.
Marshall then did superbly to tip Miovski’s cushioned volley onto the inside of the post in the 63rd minute, before Fish slid in to clear the loose ball off the line just as Sokler looked set to force it home.
It proved a pivotal moment as Hibs doubled their advantage in the 70th minute when Fish headed in Boyle’s corner at the back post.
Aberdeen had a chance to get themselves back in the game seven minutes later when they were awarded a penalty after the ball struck Stevenson’s hand in the box but Marshall pulled off another crucial save as he got down to his right to push out Miovski’s spot-kick.
The goalkeeper continued to frustrate the Dons in the closing stages, with three more impressive saves to deny Jack Milne, Connor Barron and Leighton Clarkson.
Hibernian’s next Scottish Premiership match is away to Celtic on Wednesday night.
Aberdeen are at home to Kilmarnock on the same night. Both games kick-off at 7.45pm.