Blackheath were unable to ease their National 1 drop fears as they lost 24-22 at Plymouth Albion on Saturday, writes Graham Cox.
For the fourth time this season they conceded a score in the closing moments to allow victory to slip from their grasp.
Having overturned a 12-point deficit to be leading 22-17, and with the clock nearing the red, a scrum penalty enabled Plymouth Albion to kick for touch 18 metres from the Club goal-line.
The hosts’ lineout secured the ball, before launching a powerful drive for prop Harry Wilkinson to touch down.
Fly-half Tom Putts slotted the easy conversion, to complete an immaculate kicking display.
Blackheath dropped to 12th in the table after a 15th reverse in 21 matches.
The Club had the perfect start to the contest as Jake Hennessey’s grubber-kick through the Albion defence was grounded by Nick Foster for a 5-0 lead on three minutes.
But Albion soon drove hooker Jamie Salter across. Scrum-half Henry Clement finished off a fine handling move for a second converted try in the 13th minute as the hosts eased into a 14-5 lead.
Putts bagged another three points to put the hosts 17-5 ahead at the break.
Hennessey missed with two strikes early in the second half, but was successful in the 53rd minute with George Spencer intercepting and running 60 metres to score.
The outside-centre added his second three minutes later, timing his run to perfection to take Dan Hiscocks neat pass, after Markus Burcham had made more ground and Dom McGeekie stayed strong in the tackle. Hennessey’s conversion took them into the lead.
The Club fly-half added a penalty for a no arms tackle, and with four minutes remaining, and defending solidly with Hennessey and Daniel Dass brave under the high ball, the visitors had the win in their sights.
Blackheath were deemed guilty of the scrum collapse on their own put-in. The ball went to touch, the drive launched, and Albion had won.
Blackheath host Leeds Tykes tomorrow (3pm).