Prop forward Dan Sargent grabbed a hat-trick of tries as Portsmouth enjoyed a 33-25 London two south west win over Tottonians at Rugby Camp.
The victory took the city club to within three points of their second-placed visitors and rekindled hopes of promotion.
Coach Ian Chandler was delighted with his team’s display.
‘This is a big win for us and we had to play well,’ said Chandler.
‘For spells in the game Tottonians showed just why they are second and outplayed us
‘It was our dominance in the front five of the forwards that pulled us through.
‘Again we came from behind with two forward-orientated tries and saw the game out.
‘We have got our players back and have a full-strength squad to choose from.’
Portsmouth got off to a flying start, establishing a 13-0 lead in as many minutes through two Dan Neville penalties and the first of Sargent’s tries.
Tottonians, though, cut their deficit to five points.
The visitors began the second half the stronger and a converted try saw them in front 18-16 for the first time.
Two tries in two minutes from Sargent then re-established Portsmouth’s superiority and the home side went on to victory.
‘We have set ourselves up for a very interesting second half of the season,’ said Chandler.
‘If the players stay fit and remain focused we will be there or thereabouts come the end of the season.’
United Services captain Ben Lanigan led by example with a hat-trick of tries in the 35-10 win over the Isle of Wight at Burnaby Road.
Will Blackett and James McAvoy added further tries for US and Jake Webster knocked over two conversions and a penalty.
The win ensures Services go into the mid-season break in second spot in Hampshire one.
‘After the Christmas break we have five tough fixtures that will shape our season,’ said coach Simon Burns.
In Hampshire two, Southsea Nomads recorded a 22-18 derby win over Fareham Heathens.