Rampant Warrington Wolves inflicted a 26-4 derby defeat on sorry St Helens at Langtree Park on Friday to remain two points behind Super League leaders Hull FC.
Saints fans turned on coach Keiron Cunningham as they slumped to a third successive defeat and now trail front-runners Hull by six points.
Warrington dominated their out-of-sorts rivals, running in three tries in the first half and a further two after the break in the 300th appearance of Wolves centre Ryan Atkins' career.
Ben Currie set the ball rolling when he took a pass from the influential Chris Sandow to score the opening try only six minutes in.
Talismanic scrum-half Sandow produced a jink and a burst of pace to go over for a try of his own before Atkins chased a grubber kick to touch down in his landmark match and Kurt Gidley's second conversion made it 16-0 at half-time.
Man of the match Stefan Ratchford and Rhys Evans added further tries and outclassed Saints had Jordan Turner carried off before Jonny Lomax finally got them on the board with a late try with the game long since over at a contest.
Hull remain on top of the pile after running in five tries in a 30-10 home victory over Widnes Vikings.
A converted Carlos Tuimavave try gave Hull a slender 6-4 lead at half-time and they ran away with it after the break, with Kirk Yeaman, Josh Bowden, Danny Houghton and Jamie Shaul crossing for a Hull side who travel to Warrington next Friday.
Last year's treble-winners Leeds Rhinos remain rooted to the foot of the table after losing 24-12 against third-placed Catalans Dragons at Headingley.
Wigan Warriors are level on points with Catalans and Warrington after Josh Charnley scored a hat-trick in a 23-20 victory at struggling Salford Red Devils, while Castleford Tigers were 30-22 winners at Huddersfield Giants.