Spirited Ripon RUFC eased themselves from the bottom of Yorkshire Two but succumbed to West Leeds 15-13 in an engrossing encounter at Mallorie Park on Saturday.
Ripon earned a losing bonus point but they threw away victory as the Leeds side scored a last-gasp converted try.
From the outset Ripon matched their visitors in all departments and looked comfortable in possession and sharp in defence.
After 10 minutes the West Leeds attack proved worthy and they opened the scoring with an unconverted try.
Ashley Rio responded shortly after with a well struck penalty to cap a low-scoring first-half.
The second-half saw Ripon demolish the West Leeds scrum and stifle their possession with keen defence.
The Ripon forward dominance resulted in a back row break from a scrum and Adam Newcombe crossed over.
Ashley Rio narrowly missed the conversion, but made up for it shortly afterwards by touching down for his first try of the season.
West Leeds responded with a three-point penalty.
Ripon then camped in the visitor’s 22 metre area for much of the final quarter. But, despite numerous penalties being awarded against West Leeds, the home team failed to convert pressure into points.
Desperately holding on to a small lead, Ripon’s concentration lapsed and the visitors scored the match-winning converted try before the final whistle.
Ripon travel to Knottingley on Saturday.