GOLD Coast made hard work of it, but eventually did enough to shake free of Melbourne despite a host of injuries and win by 13 points at Metricon Stadium on Saturday night.
Melbourne hit the lead midway through the third quarter and wasted a number of chances as the Suns won 13.12 (90) to 10.17 (77).
In a highly physical contest, the home team finished with just one fit player on the bench as Nathan Bock (leg), Alex Sexton (dislocated shoulder) and Sam Day (hamstring) all succumbed to injury.
In his second match back, Bock was subbed off at half-time after having problems with the leg he broke against Fremantle last year.
He said despite the patchy performance, the Suns would take any win they could get.
"We spoke about putting pressure on Melbourne early," McKenna said.
"The defensive mechanisms held out better than they did last week. I know they let us off the chain a bit with their inaccurate kicking.
"I thought our ability to work, and guys like David Swallow, Jaeger O'Meara and Dion Prestia again, their ability to work through the lines, was impressive again."
Melbourne also had injury problems of its own, with James Strauss suffering a broken nose after a stray Campbell Brown boot caught him in the face.
Strauss was taken off and had his head taped before returning.
The Suns' seventh win of the season was far from their most impressive, but helped captain Gary Ablett celebrate his 250th career match in style.
The Brownlow medallist appeared unimpressed with the close attention, continually having words with the umpires in the search for free kicks.
But his midfield mates came to the fore with Harley Bennell (28 disposals), 50-gamer David Swallow (28) and Dion Prestia (23) leading the way.
Gold Coast looked lethargic in the first half as Melbourne pressured its every move.
Aaron Hall kicked one goal from six shots as they frittered away their forward entries.
Tim Sumner helped to spark the Suns with his second half appearance, with his first career goal at the start of the half sparking a huge celebration.
Despite Melbourne having more disposals (374-336), inside 50s (53-45) and contested possessions (143-117), coach Neil Craig said the Demons found a way to lose.
"We got ourselves in a position but clearly the last quarter (had) too many missed opportunities," Craig said.
"The more opportunity you get in that (winning) position … we're going to need to get better at it. Either lack of discipline or really poor execution, that's what we've got."
Nathan Jones (29) and Jack Viney (24) were prolific in the midfield, while Jack Watts (21 disposals and two goals) and rookie Dean Kent (two goals) also impressed.