First-half goals from Nathan Austin and George Oakley kept Inverness Caledonian Thistle’s faint play-off hopes alive.
Austin grabbed the opener after nine minutes when he used his body well to collect a Coll Donaldson cross before holding off a defender and firing a left-footed strike under Jack Leighfield.
The hosts responded to going behind, and Carl Tremarco did well to clear a Darren Brownlie header off the line before Joe Thomson tested Mark Ridgers with a rasping drive from 25 yards.
Queens were struggling to get close to Ian Vigurs who was pulling the strings for the Highlanders and they doubled their lead on the half-hour when Liam Polworth swung in a cross that Oakley flicked into the net.
Queens improved after the break, especially through talisman Stephen Dobbie, who curled a delicious first-time effort narrowly wide just after the hour.
Caley Thistle should have added a third when substitute Aaron Doran fired narrowly wide with 15 minutes to go.