Sheffield Eagles failed to make it three wins on the spin after a 25-14 defeat to Featherstone Rovers at Post Office Road.
Former heroes came back to haunt Mark Aston’s side with Cory Aston, Scott Turner and Keal Carlile all instrumental in securing victory for the hosts.
In a close run contest, the Eagles fell short of extending their recent resurgence as Featherstone maintained their presence in the top four, thanks to a brace of tries from Chris Ulugia.
After a break for the Challenge Cup, the Eagles were keen to rediscover the form which earned them four wins from their last five Championship games.
And they started with purpose when taking an early lead as Simon Brown slotted a penalty from close range to give Aston’s side a slender advantage.
The visitors were soon pegged back by the hosts who hit the front after a try through Matty Wildie. Ex-Eagle, and Aston’s son Cory, nailed the conversion as he faced off against his former boss and father for the first time.
The visitors were walking a tightrope after conceding a series of penalties, and after a high shot from Scott Wheeldon they were placed on a team warning.
The warning wasn’t heeded and Greg Burns found himself in the bin, with the hosts pouncing on their numerical advantage with a try through ex-Eagle Keal Carlile. Aston converted.
The Eagles responded and went close to their first try but Elliot Minchella was held up as he darted to the line on the last.
Just before the break the Eagles were dealt a blow when another former favourite Scott Turner crossed the whitewash, but Aston missed the extras.
Aston added to Featherstone’s lead with a penalty just after the break, but crucially the Eagles bagged the next score.
Speedster Garry Lo took advantage of a knock on from former Eagle Misi Taulapapa, to sprint 90 metres to the line and Brown converted.
Another successful penalty for Aston stretched the lead to 12 points for the hosts, but back came the Eagles. Powerhouse Mark Mexico powered his way over the whitewash, and Brown converted to close the gap.
With the game in the balance, Ulugia crossed for his second score, but Aston sailed his conversion wide.
Featherstone closed the game out with a drop goal from Aston, as the Eagles’ recent run was brought to a shuddering halt.
Featherstone: Hardman; Turner, Ulugia, Hardcastle, Taulapapa; Wildie, Aston; Moore, Carlile, Baldwinson; Walters, Davies; Lockwood. Interchange: Cooper, Griffin, Oledzki, Ormondroyd.
Scorers: Tries: Wildie (9), Carlile (26), Ulugia (39, 62) Goals: Aston 4/5 Drop Goal: Aston 1/1
EAGLES: Millar; Lo, Yere, Johnson, Blackmore; Minchella, Brown; Wheeldon, Fozard, Mexico; James, Scott; Hope. Interchange: Burns, Trout, Whiteley, Cox.
Scorers: Tries: Lo (50), Mexico (58) Goals: Brown 3/3,