Burnley travelled to high flying Littleborough and in a pulsating match just came up short.
The hosts, as befits a side on the verge of a national final, looked sharp and capitalised on any lapses.
Burnley quickly found themselves trailing to two opportunistic tries, one converted, and a penalty.
Under coach Getty Schinkel the locals have discovered real self belief, and despite losing concentration at key moments, never know when they are beaten.
Burnley roared back and Richard Murray nearly scored before the impressive Steve Kent scored a try, converted by Dom Leck for a half-time score of 15-7.
An early penalty from Leck brought Burnley up to 10, before the hosts got a penalty.
Billy Ingham came on as a substitute and made an immediate impact, scoring a try which was converted by Leck.
It looked like Burnley were going to pull off another great escape as they reduced the arrears to one point, but as Burnley chased a winning score, a penalty was conceded.
Burnley went after an elusive try and the sharp Littleborough backs scored.
Burnley’s heads went down as the home side poached another score to win 35-17.
The score did not really do Burnley justice as they competed for most of the match, and with a bit more concentration and self belief then a win may have been achieved.
Today Burnley entertain Barrow at Holden Road, kick-off 3 p.m., with all support more than welcome
Burnley seconds entertained in-form Glossop and ended up losing an entertaining match in the last couple of minutes with a lapse of concentration.
Burnley dominated for large spells and their scrummaging was excellent.
Improving scrum half Adam Spencer scored a great try and put in some big tackles, and Danny Rycroft and evergreen Dave Collinge scored Burnley’s other tries, with Gus Ferguson adding two conversions
Burnley thirds had a great win at local rivals Colne and Nelson 8-5.
James McDonald, Tom Cooley, Paddy Murphy and Darren McHue and skipper Bob Walsh all had great games.