Recalled fly half Shane Drahm brilliantly slotted 17 points and back row Kai Horstmann grabbed a first half try while Sale responded through the boot of England star Charlie Hodgson.
But Ruddock insisted every one of his players deserved credit as they rose to the challenge in heroic fashion in difficult wet conditions.
"We are very pleased with the win. We knew it would take a huge effort and that is what we produced," he said.
"We played with a spirit of underdogs and our try was a real champion's effort. It was well worked, well executed and in the end proved to be enough.
"Our discipline was much better which ultimately gave us the chance to limit what Sale could do and we forced them into errors. Sale are a fantastic team and if we allowed them to play they would have created chances.
"We showed great defence near our line just before half-time and that was significant. If they had crossed the line then it was a totally different game.
"We took the chance that came our way and we were very disciplined afterwards. I can only pay tribute to the team because they showed real passion in the second half."
The victory saw Warriors move further away from bottom spot and Ruddock admitted the victory had been overdue after a series of close calls.
"I hope it is a turning point for us. We?ve been so close on a number of occasions," he said.
"We should have won up at Newcastle Falcons and that was a tough defeat to take. Last week we outscored London Irish but didn't get the result and we have been on the wrong end on a number of occasions. Against Sale we finally got a result we deserved.
"I would agree that perhaps we got the bounce of the ball with the try that Marcel Garvey palmed back to Kai Horstmann. They have been going the other way for us.
"But the big thing was the discipline. We didn't give away penalties and we didn;t get anyone sent to the sinbin."
Ruddock was also delighted with the performance of recalled fly half Drahm, who will join Japanese side Kubota Spears next season.
Drahm was brought back into the starting line-up with Loki Crichton ruled out with a stinger injury.
The England A international responded with a stunning all round display and enjoyed a 100 percent record with the boot in tricky conditions.
"Shane Drahm was fantastic for us - he was out of this world and deserves a lot of credit," added Ruddock.
"He kicked everything that moved and kept us ahead - he was the difference.
"Our game plan was simple when we saw the weather. We wanted the forwards to keep going forward and hold their scrum. We felt we could pressure their lineout.
"We also made the decision to go with the wind in the first half and not chase the game, we defended the lead in the second half and that excited the players. They seemed inspired by not having to chase the game.
"It wasn't a day for fancy play - it was about doing the basics well and working on those one per cents that can make the difference.
"We showed that with Thinus Delport getting back in the first half to stop a try, Matt Powell also showed that when he dived on a loose ball, seconds later Shane slots a drop goal. They make the difference and the players really responded against Sale."