Dewsbury Rams’ hopes of finishing top of the Kingstone Press Championship Shield were ended by defeat at relegated Doncaster.
A terrible first-half performance saw the Rams trail 22-4 and although they produced a fightback after the break it wasn’t enough to prevent Doncaster registering only their second win of the season.
A lovely Tom Carr pass sent Liam Welham over for the opening try and Doncaster’s bright start continued when Welham was sent crashing through a gap. Tom Hodson landed both conversions as the home side led 12-0.
Former Ram Ryan Wright scooped up a stray Dewsbury pass and raced to the line, with Hodson converting to leave the visitors shellshocked.
Dalton Grant leapt to gather a neat Brett Seymour chip over to dive in at the corner for an unconverted try.
However, Doncaster finished the first half strongly as Carr and Welham linked to put Peter Fox over in the corner. Hodson was unable to convert but the home side had a healthy lead.
Things got even better for the Dons just three minutes after the break as another Rams pass went to ground and Welham picked up the ball to send Fox racing over wide out. Hodson added a terrific conversion to stretch the lead to 28-4.
Dewsbury then began a fightback as Grant did well to plant the ball down in the corner and Seymour landed a superb touchline goal.
Grant completed his hat-trick after collecting a Karl Pryce pass and when Makali Aizue barged his way over, the Rams had real hope.
Seymour converted the latter try to reduce the arrears to 28-20 with 20 minutes left.
Doncaster’s defence did superbly well to keep the Rams out and Joe McLocklan eased his side’s nerves with a late drop goal. Fox was then completed his hat-trick.
Doncaster: Carr; Hodson, Cowling, Welham, Fox’ McLocklan, Wilkinson; Groat, Kesik, Spiers, Walton, Foster, Emmett. Substitutes: Carbutt, Kelly, Wright, Verlinden.
Dewsbury Rams: Pryce, Morton, Hale, Crookes, Grant; Wildie, Thackeray; Aizue, Conroy, Hepworth, Spicer, Farrell, L Adamson. Substitutes: Nash, Brown, Jackson, Seynour.
Referee: C Campbell.