The top four is a tantalising possibility for Catalans Dragons after they saw off Crusaders' fightbacks in Perpignan.
Tries from Scott Millard and Jean-Philippe Baile gave the Dragons a 10-2 lead at the interval, and they Dragons looked to be coasting until the hooker Lloyd White, in for Gareth Thomas, went over to reduce the arrears for Crusaders.
But Dragons showed why they had lost only once in their previous nine matches, by hitting straight backwith two tries in the pace of three minutes from Setaimata Sa and Damien Blanch.
Crusaders belied their status as Super League stragglers by hitting back again with Jordan Tansey and Jarrod Sammut crossing over but their hopes were snuffed out quickly once again.
A drop goal from Scott Dureau, who also kicked five goals in his 11-point haul, was followed by a second try by Blanch and the Dragons were back in control.
Their eighth victory in 10 matches kept them firmly in fifth place and poised to challenge the top four.