Central Coast have taken the upper hand in the fight to avoid the A-League wooden spoon, dismantling Newcastle 2-0 to consign the sorry Jets to last.
Mariners skipper Nick Montgomery let rip a 32nd-minute screamer in Gosford on Sunday, before Fabio Ferreira doubled the lead after the break to lift their side from bottom to eighth, a point above Adelaide and the Jets.
In the context of the wooden spoon, this meeting was crucial.
Both Jets coach Mark Jones and Mariners counterpart Paul Okon are in their first seasons and battling to stay above the ladder's bottom rung just six weeks after both were a genuine shot of finals football.
Now, in a cruel twist, the Jets travel to face Sydney FC in the final round and could find themselves claiming the humiliating status on the same night the Sky Blues are presented with the Premiers' Plate.
Central Coast, perhaps desperate not to relive the horrors of last campaign's spoon, took immediate control and outplayed their visitors throughout to claim their first derby win in 911 days.
Kwabena Appiah's weaving forays yielded a couple of chances that either lacked sufficient venom or failed to connect with marksman Roy O'Donovan.
Fabio Ferreira's movement was also instructive, and it was the Portuguese attacker who initiated the interplay between O'Donovan and Connor Pain that set up Montgomery's finish.
And some finish it was -- a low, hard drive from 20 metres that evaded Jack Duncan's outstretched gloves and settled in the bottom right corner.
Newcastle's woeful defending got worse after the break when they conceded again -- their 17th goal without response -- to equal the defunct New Zealand Knights' all-time record.
O'Donovan exploded on the counter-attack and fed to Pain before a marginally onside Ferreira drew out Duncan and doubled the lead.
There were moments of promise for the Jets, especially when Morten Nordstrand slipped Daniel Mullen a piercing ball he laid in front of goal, only for Storm Roux to hustle clear.
That was reflective of the whole affair, as Hoole endured a nervy introduction before he and the Jets finally clicked into gear and rounded on their hosts in the final 15 minutes.
By then the Mariners should have been four or five up such were their chances, not to mention Okon's fury that the video assistant referee did not deem Lachlan Jackson's apparent first-half handball worthy of a retrospective penalty.