Dundee United jumped a place above Motherwell in the league table thanks to a second-half wonder goal from right-back Mark Wilson and Motherwell's continued failure to find the net.
The game got off to a good start as both sides pushed for the opening goal. The first effort coming as early as the sixth minute when a Collin Samuel shot was deflected for a corner.
But as the first half wore on the game began to get scrappy as both sets of players found it difficult to cope with the tricky surface.
Motherwell's first real effort at goal did not arrive until 25 minutes in when a Jason Dair effort was blocked for a corner. Motherwell were also finding it tough to cope in midfield with United's five dominating the home side's four in that cricial area.
The second half started in lively fashion with Motherwell creating the first opening with a David Clarkson header at the back post saved brilliantly by Paul Gallacher diving to his right. Clarkson got on to the rebound, but could only scuff the ball against the post.
On 51 minutes a Charlie Miller crossfield ball found Wilson unmarked wide on the right. A couple of stepovers took him inside Steven Hammell and he sent a left-foot shot curling high over the helpless Gordon Marshall.
Seven minutes later the home side's Scott McDonald saw his shot from a Derek Adams corner hit one of his own team-mates as it looked as though it was heading in.
Motherwell then changed formation to 4-3-3 as they pushed for an equaliser but they only managed to create a handful of chances with Clarkson being unlucky on a couple of occasions.
The home side had two late penalty claims as crosses struck defenders arms, but the ref waved both aside.