Linfield beat Cliftonville despite Blues boss David Jeffrey making 11 changes to the starting line-up which featured against Portadown on Saturday.
Gary Browne's shot from inside the box was deflected past Ryan Brown and into the net after 17 minutes.
Browne grabbed his second on 65 minutes with a strike into the bottom right hand corner from 12 yards out.
Eamonn Seydak pulled one back with a low shot into the bottom corner with two minutes remaining.
Billy Joe Burns provided the cross for Browne's opener but Joe Gormley should have equalised as his shot was palmed away by Stuart Addis.
Daryl Fordyce fired wide when well placed before the interval.
After Browne completed his brace, Michael Carvill had a chance but Brown tipped his effort over the bar.
The Reds now trail Portadown by three points in the race for second place.