Preston moved level on points with Blackburn after defeating their hosts 2-1 in the Championship at Ewood Park to keep their hopes of promotion via the playoffs alive.
The 100th league meeting between the sides was ultimately settled in the first half through Greg Cunningham's superb strike - his first since returning to Preston - and Liam Lindsay's close-range header.
Adam Armstrong's penalty in first-half added-time left the game in the balance but Rovers could not maintain the momentum and missed the chance to gain ground on the top six.
They enjoyed the majority of play and were denied an equaliser by a magnificent Daniel Iversen save, but it was the Lilywhites who had the clearer chances to extend the lead.
Two goals were enough for Alex Neil's men, who ended a run of three winless games.
Blackburn remain six points off the top six after losing their first league game at home in 2021.
This weekend sees second-placed Norwich host Stoke, and Daniel Farke's men will be hoping to return to their winning ways after going winless in their last three matches.
Leaders Brentford on the other hand are flying, with Thomas Frank's charges having last lost in the league on October 25 to Stoke.