Workington Town 26 Doncaster 3O: Spiers' last-ditch try completes hat trick of wins for Dons
Doncaster RLFC recorded a third successive League One win, beating Workington Town 30-26 in a dramatic game at Derwent Park.
But they left it late and there was only time for the resulting conversion by scrum-half Jack Miller when prop Russ Spiers touched down.
It was the start of the toughest month of the regular season that caretaker coach Pete Green had been looking for ahead of next Sunday’s home game against second-placed Barrow.
The Dons drew the first blood – stand-off Jordan Howden touching down from his own kick for a fifth-minute try after the home side had failed to clear. Miller added the extras.
Bidding to bounce back to the Championship at the first time of asking, Town drew level several minutes later, Connor Fitzsimmons getting on the end of a neat kick and stand-off Carl Forber tagging on the conversion.
But Town quickly found themselves six points adrift again.
The Dons again capitalise on a mistake with winger Ritchie Barnett sending Miller over for a try he also converted after latching on to a dropped pass.
Town hit back with Phil Lister touching down too far out on the right for Forber to convert.
Town did well to deny strong-running centre Jason Tali in the final minute of the first quarter.
The Dons were not to be denied, however, and Miller bagged a second converted try after getting on the end of another clever grubber-kick by Howden to make it 18-10.
Aided by a succession of penalties, Town finished the half on top and cut the deficit to just four points with an unconverted try by Jason Mossop.
But for a knock-on by winger John Patrick, they would have been level with the conversion to come within five minutes of the restart.
It merely proved a stay of execution, former Super League second-rower Phil Joseph crashing over to level the scores. Forber added the extras to edge his side in front for the first time.
Town continued to dominate the third quarter and had further chances either side of Doncaster second-rower Brad England being sin-binned on 54 minutes.
Just as things were beginning to look ominous for 12-man Dons, skipper Kyle Kesik scored from close-range after Spiers had been held just short.
Miller again added the conversion to give his side a 24-20 lead going into the final quarter.
Town hit back and the visitors had to dig deep to deny Joseph a second try. Despite being back up to full strength scrum-half Jamie Doran touched down with Forber converting to earn Town a two-point lead ten minutes from time.
But the Dons weren’t to be denied.
n Dons: Sheriff, Doherty,Welham, Tali, Barnett, Howden, Miller; Spiers, Kesik, Braham, Martin, England, Green. Subs: Aizue, Muranka, Wright, Hedges.