Last updated on .From the section Scottish Premiership
Stevie May stunned Motherwell to snatch St Johnstone's first Scottish Premiership win of the season in a crazy stoppage-time spell featuring goals at both ends.
Motherwell peppered their box and were set for a draw before May pounced.
The striker seized upon confusion in the home box to prod home before a wild and jubilant patch of St Johnstone supporters.
It was an agonising first defeat in the Motherwell dugout for interim boss Steven Hammell, who is among the contenders to replace Graham Alexander on a permanent basis. • None Reaction and as it happened
For the most part, this looked every inch a scrap between two teams shorn of confidence. Motherwell, stupefied by their desperate European exit at the hands of Sligo Rovers. St Johnstone, toiling to escape the dark shadows cast by last season and the relegation play-off required to stay in the division.
That term, St Johnstone were the league's lowest scorers by a distance. They were toothless against Hibernian and the lack of ruthlessness was evident again when Theo Bair galloped through on goal but shot tamely at Liam Kelly.
Bair has yet to score since arriving in Perth from Canada in January. He is a powerful specimen, though, with a neat touch, and showed both elements when putting Murphy in for the opener.
The forward used his body to muscle on to a raking ball from Ryan McGowan, and chested delicately in to Murphy's path. From right of centre, the veteran winger swept low beyond Liam Kelly.
Motherwell almost replied immediately, Connor Shields' awkward half-volley swerving off a post. St Johnstone nearly doubled their lead before the break when Considine looked set to stab home a Carey free-kick, but Paul McGinn nipped smartly ahead of him.
In the new half, there were more last-ditch heroics. Alex Mitchell slid superbly to prod the ball away from Joe Efford, racing through on St Johnstone's goal.
Sondre Solholm Johansen did likewise when Murphy squared for Bair, who would have had a golden opportunity to kill the game. Then, in the dying minutes, it was Considine himself, lurching his massive frame between Shields and an open goal, before Mitchell nearly had his head taken off sending a Sean Goss howitzer behind.
It was but a prelude to the nerve-shredding finale. Goss bent in a corner, the stooping Solholm Johansen got something on it, before the ball bobbled inexorably past Remi Matthews via Carey's touch.
That looked like the decisive moment. The home support certainly thought so. They didn't reckon for St Johnstone's bloody-mindedness.
Callum Davidson's men won a corner of their own. Motherwell dealt with the initial delivery, but could not clear the second. Up stepped Carey, unmarked, to caress a header across goal. Up stepped May, stealing in, seizing on his team-mates pass, stabbing home first-time with his right foot.
Chaos in the away end. A mighty win for St Johnstone and Davidson.
Motherwell huffed and puffed for long spells. They were by turns toothless and wasteful. Final balls went astray, deliveries unfinished, opportunities squandered.
Hammell is a strong contender to land the manager's job on a full-time basis, and giving Motherwell back their mojo would be high on his list of priorities.
St Johnstone have never lacked doggedness. For 90 minutes, they defended stoutly, with Considine and Mitchell particularly compelling. They also found a rare flourish of attacking incision, and Callum Davidson needs to see more of that kind of panache.
As sweet as the victory will taste, the St Johnstone boss will be irked at the concession of a second late set-piece goal in as many weeks.