The Central Coast Mariners will occupy a spot in the top six for the week after grinding out a 1-1 draw with the Jets away from home.
The result extended the Jets winless start to the season to a club record eight games.
Phil Moss' men will leave Hunter Stadium the happier of the two, having watched his team repel the more threatening chances, but both coaches were left to rue a string of missed opportunities in front of goal.
A largely forgettable first half paved the way for an adventurous and oft frantic second stanza, where both sides could feel disappointed they didn't come away with all the points. Glen Trifiro, Marcos Flores and Edson Montano all struck the woodwork, while Matt Sim was denied a late winner by an incredible reflex save from Newcastle custodian Ben Kennedy.
The question must be raised, however, as to why the Mariners game lacked energy and dynamism until after they conceeded. A professional outfit should not need to be behind to play good football. Against a more prolific side, they would have been punished earlier, and with Melbourne Victory on the horizon, a significant change in intensity levels is required.
Montano, the former Bracelona junior, opened the scoring just three minutes afther half time. David Carney's pass ricocheted between Josh Rose's boot and Zac Anderson's face before falling to Montano, and the striker made no mistake with a wicked strike sizzling past Liam Reddy and bursting the back of the net.
The lead didn't last long though, with Richard Vernes starting and finishing a move to score the Mariners first goal in over 230 minutes. The Hungarian latched on to a low cross from Michael Neill to force the ball home from close range.
Vernes' form in the derby provided yellow and navy fans some excitement, with a plethora of vital and skillful touches in his first A-League start.