The Jamberoo Superoos bounced back into the playoffs picture with Sunday's slump-snapping 26-20 victory over Milton-Ulladulla at Kevin Walsh Oval.
After four successive losses had all but buried their finals' hopes, Jamberoo grabbed the win they so badly needed.
"It's really pleasing to finish a game on the right side of the scoreboard again," captain-coach Matt Coelho said.
"It's been a month so hopefully we can kick on a bit from here."
The Bulldogs were first to strike on Sunday, building an 8-0 lead with winger James Patterson's two unconverted tries.
Jamberoo didn't panic, opening their account with back-rower Robbie Noble's try.
When fullback Jarrod Schodde converted Coelho's try next to the posts eight minutes later, the home side had a lead they would not relinquished.
A 10-8 half-time lead became 14-8 early in the second half before another Roos' try stretched the margin to 20-8.
The Dogs refused to roll over, cutting the lead to 20-14 with fullback Mitch Simmington's converted try.
Jamberoo responded via winger Ben Barnard's second try before Schodde converted for a 26-14 lead.
Half-back Thomas Cook scored for the Dogs and Luke Young's conversion made it 26-20, but the Roos held their nerve over the final five minutes.
"I was so happy with our boys. It was a good, grinding win," Coelho said.
"Right from the get-go, the talk was unbelievable. It's the best we've had all year. There was just a feeling out there today that we haven't had this year. The boys played with a lot of hunger and focus.
"We know every game could be our season, but we've ticked one off today and now we'll focus on next week against Gerringong. "That's going to be tough. It's sponsor's day as well, and in the back of our minds is the last time we played them when they thrashed us, so there's certainly a lot to play for and hopefully we'll do well."
Albion Park-Oak Flats caused the upset of the season with a 24-22 away win over unbeaten Warilla.
The Gorillas scored five tries to four but goalkicker Nick Lazerevski had an off-day with the boot.
The Eagles are out of top-five contention yet celebrated the rare victory like a grand final triumph.
Despite suffering their first loss, Warilla remain on top of the table.
Berry-Shoalhaven Heads stayed well and truly in the finals race with Saturday's 28-22 defeat of Kiama at Berry Showground.
The Magpies have won five straight and are tied for fifth with Gerringong.