ST Patrick’s were good at times but ended up on the wrong end of a 46-24 score line at Wath Brow Hornets.
The trouble was that they were penalised so often that Hornets were able to keep up continual pressure in the first half without any great effort on their own part.
St Pat’s were first on the scoreboard after five minutes when James Noon finished well off a superb back-flip under pressure from Earl Hurst.
There followed tries for Hornets by Karl Dixon and Scott Pink, both converted by Fran King.
The visitors struck back with a 23rd-minute try when Simon Atherton gathered up a loose kick and touched down, Brad Smith converted.
More penalties and a couple of mis-fielded kicks led to tries by Hornets’ Ben Agnew, Glen Meagan and Adam Hodgson before half time.
King’s conversions of the last two made it 28-10.
Missed tackles accounted for the next score by Fran King only a couple of minutes after the re-start, which he also converted.
St Pat’s embarked on their best period of the match with a try on 51 minutes by Brad Hargreaves following a kick by Ryan Smith. Lyndon Robertson followed up with a close-range effort, goaled by Brad Smith.
Catch-up began to look feasible when a clean break was made for the line, but it foundered on a forward pass.
Instead, Hornets extended their lead when Lewis McCarron was held on the line but won a struggle to get the ball down. King added the goal.
St Pat’s re-asserted themselves with a try by Liam Gannon but Hornets had the final say deep into injury time when Peter Caddy scored a try converted by King.
St Pat’s have another long trip and a tough match in prospect on Saturday when they travel to take on second-placed West Hull, kick-off 2-30 pm.
A win could lift St Pat’s back up to sixth place depending how other results go.
But in a reflection of how close the top flight is this season, defeat for the Wigan outfit could see Egremont Rabgers make ground on St Pat’s if they enjoy a win against the odds at Leigh Miners.
This would put St Pat’s just one place and three points above the relegation places, though the play-offs will still be very much the aim for the club.
St Jude’s had no game last weekend and are still bottom, four points adrift of Hunslet Warriors with one win from their opening 10 games.
Jude’s however, have three games in hand on their rivals.