HOLMES Chapel’s top-of-the-table encounter at Widnes resulted in a 42-10 loss.
Chapel are now three points adrift of Widnes in second place in North West Intermediate League Division Three South.
Injuries to powerful forwards Jim Hamilton and Dan Martin meant Chapel lost some destructiveness in attack and were forced into making both their replacements within the first 15 minutes.
Despite dominating scrums, Chapel were second best around the park.
After a nervous start, some disorganised Chapel defence allowed Widnes to find space and their backs were able to punish the boys in blue and gold.
The home side scored three tries in the first half, with the visitors only managing one penalty.
Chapel had slightly more energy at the start of the second half.
They put some phases together and stretched the Widnes defence, with Jim Moss forcing his way through and bringing Chapel back within touching distance.
That was as good as it got for Chapel and despite their hard work they were unable to contain the Widnes attacking threat. Chapel ended the game with only 13 men due to injuries.