IF last week’s victory over Redcar had opened the relegation escape door for YMCA, then this sorry 30-10 defeat at Keighley almost slammed it shut once again.
Fellow strugglers Keighley were clearly fired-up and ready to give it their all, while the visitors never made a fight of it, although they did have their chances and were only 6-3 down at half time.
Keighley’s Brown knocked over two penalties when YM were caught offside, while Arron Canning pulled one back for the Laund Hill men, after James Swift had missed with two earlier attempts.
A third Brown penalty then extended Keighley’s lead to 9-3 almost from the re-start, but YM’s backs were now starting to get the better of the home side, and there was still some hope.
But that soon disappeared when scrum half Josh Marshall, who had been playing well behind a struggling pack, was substituted, and within a minute of the exchange his replacement Ashley Walker was sin-binned for illegal use of the knee which left the visitors trying to hold back the floodgates.
Keighley’s pressure told when they were awarded a penalty and centre Wilkinson, seeing YM ambling back, took a quick tap to himself and went over the tryline unopposed.
Brown tacked on the extras and suddenly the game had almost gone from YM’s grasp.
And five minutes later it had as the home back rower Sugden spotted an opening in defence and scuttled through to score by the posts, with Brown again on target to move the score out to 23-3.
They did get some consolation, when winger Chris Belton hacked a loose ball upfield and won the race to the line to score the try which Swift converted, but it was too late to affect the outcome.
And with seconds to go, a YM pass was intercepted on the halfway line by Keighley second row Feather who sprinted off with no-one to beat for the final try of the afternoon.
Brown completed a miserable day for the visitors which makes relegation to Yorkshire II now a distinct probability.