The Illawarra Cutters were downed by the Wyong Roos 40-26 at WIN Stadium, Wollongong on Saturday.
Despite having a comfortable lead midway through the second half, a late fade out allowed the visitors to steal a victory in the final period of the match.
It was all the home side in the first half and in the 12th minute a cross-field kick saw Tyrone Cranston bat it back, pick it up and score in the corner.
Cutters five-eighth Sam Duggan converted from out wide for a 6-0 lead.
In the 23rd minute Illawarra scored again when Duggan ducked and burrowed his way over the try line under the posts.
Duggan converted his own try for a 12-0 lead.
Right on half-time Duggan added a penalty goal for a 14-0 lead to the Cutters at the break.
The home side started stronger in the second half as well as a ball to second-rower Chris Lewis close to the line saw him score.
Duggan again made no mistake as Illawarra extended their lead to 20-0.
Three minutes later they were in again when a drop ball from the Wyong fullback on his goal line allowed winger Geoff Daniela to plant the ball down for an easy try.
Duggan converted from next to the posts for a 26-0 lead.
However, in the 50th minute the momentum shifted and Wyong scored their first try through Jono Ford.
Roos fullback Mark Kheirallah converted to bring the game to 26-6.
On the hour mark the Roos scored again as centre Shaune Corrigan found the try line.
Another conversion was successful from Kheirallah as the gap was reduced to 26-12.
The game was soon in reach for the visitors in the 63rd minute when Zane Tetevano scored under the posts.
An easy conversion for Kheirallah meant the game was poised at 26-18.
The Cutters had barely regrouped from the last try when a break on half-way was finished by Damon Goolagong.
Yet another relatively easy kick for the kicker meant that the Cutters were holding onto a 26-24 with 15 minutes remaining in the game.
With ten minutes to go, the visitors took the lead through Mitch Williams who was given the ball after another break from Ford.
Kheirallah converted another try for the Roos as they went ahead 30-26.
The momentum had well and truly shifted and when Jay Florimo scored off a set play from a scrum, the game appeared over as they led 34-26.
In the 78th minute Wyong capped off their comeback when Kheirallah got a try of his own under the posts.
Kheirallah converted his own try as Wyong registered a 40-26 victory over the Illawarra Cutters.
Illawarra Cutters 26. Tries: Cranston, Duggan, Lewis, Daniela. Goals: Duggan (4/4). Penalty Goal: Duggan (1/1).
Wyong Roos 40. Tries: Ford, Corrigan, Tetevano, Goolagong, Williams, Florimo, Kheirallah. Goals: Kheirallah (6/7).