Gosport & Fareham produced another late show to grab a bonus point in their 17-12 London one south defeat against Chobham at Gosport Park.
The important score saw the home side open up a 13-point gap on the bottom three after a fine performance against their second-placed visitors.
Head coach Neil McRoberts felt it was a well-deserved point for his hard-working side ahead of their clash against league leaders Wimbledon next week.
‘Our team is itching to get at the leaders because the guys have really got the bit between their teeth,’ said the Gosport & Fareham chief.
‘I don’t think it’s pie in the sky to say we looked like a top two or three team because we looked every bit as good as the second-placed team and that’s really impressive.
‘That was a point we more than deserved.
‘On the balance of the game and in the context of the season I’m very happy with the bonus point.
‘It was the very least the guys deserved and over the 80 minutes I think we probably deserved more.
‘I think we were a bit unlucky not to get more.
‘It was one of those games that we could have won but equally we could possibly have come away with nothing.
‘They had a very dangerous winger who scored their two tries and ultimately that was the difference between the two teams.
‘It was one of those games that could have swung either way.’
The home side made a disastrous start – conceding seven points in a matter of minutes.
Scrum-half Wes Dugan got the hosts back into the game with a 39th-minute try following a sustained spell of pressure.
Chobham knocked over a penalty, though, to lead 10-5 at the interval.
Gosport had the wind at their backs in the second half but were rocked by yellow cards for Chris Thompson and Craig Chance.
The visitors exploited their numerical advantage to stretch the lead to 17-5 but they were helped by a few missed Gosport & Fareham tackles. With time running out Wes Dugan struck for a try in the final minute, with brother Wayne Dugan adding the all-important conversion for the priceless bonus point.
Despite the defeat, McRoberts remains upbeat and is keen to build on the performance against Chobham.
‘I think we can kick on from here,’ said the head coach.
‘Forget the fact we’ve lost a game because that’s a secondary issue to me, it was more about the performance.
‘Next week we need to play like we did against Chobham and get something out of the game.
‘Then we can stop looking behind us and start looking up and that’s important for us because we are just moving further away from the drop zone.
‘I’m looking for more of the same performance and hopefully we’ll get the rub of the green a little bit and get a better result.’