WORKINGTON humbled Dewsbury Rams for the second time this season by beating Glenn Morrison’s indisciplined men 34-24 at the Zebra Claims Stadium.
Three tries in a crucial seven-minute period when Dewsbury were reduced to 11 men proved decisive for the Championship Shield strugglers.
It ended with two precious points for Town, and with Swinton losing to Oldham, the great escape from relegation is still on.
Dewsbury have only themselves to blame for not avenging a narrow defeat at Workington last month.
They were seriously fired-up from the start, and were consequently over-zealous, which effectively cost them the game after establishing a 22-8 lead.
Workington got off to a great start on four minutes when a long, floated pass from Carl Forber found Matty Gee in space and he went in for a simple touchdown.
Dewsbury should have done better when they worked a good position under the Town sticks but Mitch Stringer dropped a pass.
When Town responded with a good attack in the Dewsbury 10-metre zone the Rams were penalised for a foul tackle on Carl Forber. Jarrod Sammut kicked a simple penalty.
More sloppy work by the Rams cost them points when a pass went astray in the town 10 metre zone and Declan Hulme ran the ball clear for the home side.
Town did get over in the corner with a spectacular dive from Theerapol Ritson but the flag was up for a foot in touch.
Dewsbury were reduced to 12 men on 24 minutes when Tony Tonks was sent to the sin bin for a foul tackle and two minutes later the Rams went further behind. Forber was fouled again and Sammut put-over a short-range penalty.
Even so the Rams were next on the scoreboard. They moved the ball on the last tackle and a kick from Paul Sykes came back off Sammut to spark a scramble which finally saw the ball back in Dewsbury’s possession.
A floated pass from Jason Crookes put Dale Morton with a simple touchdown, which Sykes converted.
Tonks arrived back in time to see his side take the lead.
A dropped ball in the Workington 30 metre zone was picked-up by the lively Joel Farrell and he was tackled a yard short.
The ball was switched to the left and eventually full-back Josh Guzdek stepped through and stretched out an arm to touchdown on 36 minutes. Sykes missed a fairly straightforward conversion.
In the 39th minute the game exploded.
Farrell, who had been bright and creative for the Rams, put his knee into the face of Brett Phillips at a play-the-ball and the Town forward retaliated with a punch.
Farrell was sent-off and Phillips received a yellow card.
A minute into the second-half Dewsbury increased their lead when Guzdek found Sykes in space and he finished-off easily. Sykes added the extras.
Dewsbury increased their lead on 47 minutes with a try which had its origins in their own 10 metre zone.
Crookes avoided two tackles, cut in-field and had support from Aaron Brown.
Brown made good yards before sending Morton away to hold off Jason Mossop and score. Sykes converted for a 22-8 lead.
Trailing 22-8, Town were looking to fight back with the return of Phillips and a 13-12 advantage in playing numbers.
Workington were duly lifted on 54 minutes when Sammut kicked for the line and in the scramble that followed Callum Phillips got the touchdown. Sammut converted.
But Brett Phillips immediately left the field for what appeared to be a hamstring injury and when Dewsbury built a good position they won a penalty on 58 minutes which Sykes converted.
Dewsbury were in trouble on 63 minutes, though. Matt Groat was sent to the sin-bin for obstruction and the Rams were down to 11 men.
Town got their reward a minute later when Callum Phillips put Tom Walker over under the posts. Sammut's conversion pulled Town back to within four points.
On 67 minutes they were level as Dewsbury’s depleted ranks were cut open and Mossop raced through for the touchdown.
Sammut’s conversion edged Town in front.
It got better on 70 minutes when Gee powered through to score and Sammut curled in the conversion.
Dewsbury were back to 12 men when Sammut landed a 30-metre penalty to ease Town towards the finish line.
Rams’ agony was compounded in the last minute when Sykes was yellow-carded, apparently for a remark to a touch judge.