ST Pats kept up the heat on league leaders Sligo Rovers with a hard-fought 1-0 victory over Dublin rivals Shelbourne at Richmond Park.
Liam Buckley's men remain in second position thanks to Greg Bolger's first-half goal and excitement is building around Inchicore that this could be their year.
The Saints took the lead on nine minutes when Ger O'Brien whipped the ball into the area and Bolger looped a header over Dean Delaney.
Pats threatened to extend their lead for the remainder of the half but couldn't find a second break-through.
Christy Fagan was denied a chance to double the Saints lead after being brilliantly blocked by Pats old boy Brian Shorthall after the break and Shels began to generate more possession and scoring threat.
Paddy Kavanagh went close from the edge of the box for Shels but Brendan Clarke was equal to his deflected shot.
Philly Hughes should have equalised for Shels midway through the half but his header cannoned back off the crossbar and their chance was gone when Barry Clancy was sent-off for a kick on Ger O'Brien.
It was plain sailing for Pats after that and they stay within four points of Ian Baraclough's league leaders.