Pertemps Bees 23 Exeter 16
Inhabitants of the Sharmans Cross clubhouse must have been glad their match kicked off at two o'clock, it gave them all of an hour to enjoy a superlative win over Exeter before the other National One results spoiled the ambience.
Their team started the day three points and one place clear of the relegation places, spent it mastering a side against which they had very little right to compete and ended it wondering what more they need to do to rescue themselves from their plight at the foot of the table.
This, after all, should have been a happy occasion. A real victory over a decent outfit, not like the scratchy efforts pieced together against London Welsh and Sedgley Park, and one that was well above what can reasonably be expected given the combatants' relative inequity in resources.
So how was it a 23-16 triumph of might over money became little more than par for the weekend? Well, bottom side Sedgley Park took three points from their draw with Newbury, London Welsh won at Otley and Nottingham beat Cornish Pirates. Thank goodness Plymouth Albion landed a last-minute penalty to beat Doncaster.
All of which meant the net result of Bees' best performance for many a month was no movement up the table and only two more points away from the drop zone.
Outcomes elsewhere meant the bottom of National One has once more concertinaed to such an extent that eight of its 14 clubs will feel, to varying degrees, they still have more work to do to remain at level two next season.
It really is a remarkable situation and is only slightly compromised by the Rugby Football Union's dithering over whether to suspend demotion for the present campaign. Proof, if any were needed, the sport's governing body retain their ability to make a sow's ear from a silk purse.
But it should not be assumed that this win is of little consequence, therefore. The ripples of a stoical performances such as this will radiate throughout the coming weeks.
And Bees will need them to as well. With Pirates away and Bedford at home, the league's second and third-placed clubs, as their next two games, Phil Maynard's men need all the confidence they can get.
"I'll be a little bit happier about going all the way down to Penzance now," the director of rugby said. "This takes a little bit of pressure off us with the matches we have got coming up. From that respect it was a very important game."
Three wins from four fixtures has seen the can-do has returned to Maynard's vernacular, he is relishing a trip to deepest, darkest Cornwall to take on his old buddy Jim McKay in a fortnight's time.
The Australian's charges boast a mirror image of that record, three losses from their last four appointments. A Bees win remains unlikely but as Maynard pointed out: "Who'd have thought we'd have beaten Exeter?"
Intoxicating stuff confidence. But it's exactly that self-belief that makes a coach throw his entire bench into a finely-poised game as Maynard did in this one.
First a couple of front-row replacements and then, with ten minutes to go and the scores tied at a baker's dozen apiece, the entire midfield is changed.
Off go fly-half and play-maker Tim Walsh, defensive leader Simon Martin and top line-out target Rob Walton. In their stead come the unpredictable Ryan Lamb, rusty Mike Davies and volatile Alex Davidson.
All three then have a hand in the two scores that won the match for Bees. Davidson claimed a throw to the back just as the hosts' line-out was starting to creak and won a penalty for pulling down. Harvey kicked it for 16-13.
Then, with six minutes remaining, Davies and Lamb combine to put Nick Baxter behind the visitors' defence.
The wing is downed two metres short of his 150th National League try and when Lamb next touches the ball it is to take the wrong option a yard from the line by running straight into the cover. Or so it seemed.
The England Under 21 stand-off kept his arm free and flipped a pass to Ben Gerry - another substitute - to seal four crucial points.
The identity of the creator was not lost on Maynard. Lamb's ability has not been questioned during his season-long loan from Gloucester, the same cannot be said about his temperament.
"Everybody played their part," he said. "Ryan Lamb turned up at training on Thursday night having just played for England in Italy the week before and about to play against France and said he wanted to play. That sums up the hunger and work ethic this squad has but it should also be noted we are starting to play some good football."
Indeed they are.
Cae Trayhern was once again a monument to endeavour, he took a fearful shoeing for his side late on, Jim Jenner produced the latest in a string of immense performers while Adam Billig continued to provide the cutting edge to the Bees back-line.
And what of Baxter?
His nine-minute cameo was enough to swing the game the home team's way. Little wonder, then, that he is considering signing on for another year, record or no record.