Stephen Lowry re-ignited the title race with a spectacular late winner at Ferney Park on Saturday.
In an enthralling game, either side could have claimed victory, but with Crusaders losing it offered Linfield the chance to close the gap at the top which they did.
The Mallards took a first half lead with Ryan Curran netting his first goal for the club, whilst Ryan Mayse seen two efforts well saved by Gareth Deane.
His opposite number Richard Brush also had to pull off a few good stops, whilst Niall Quinn headed over a glorious chance for the Belfast Blues.
Linfield drew level early in the second half with substitute Aaron Burns converting a Waterworth cross from close range.
Both sides had efforts cleared off the line, but the turning point came in a 4 minute period towards the end of the game.
Jason McCartney lobbed Deane but his effort agonisingly hit the bar, and 4 minutes later Lowry netted a wonder strike to steal victory.
After the final whistle, Johnny Lafferty was sent off for an altercation with Jamie Mulgrew.