Canterbury battled hard but fell to a 38-17 defeat at home to National 2 South leaders Worthing on Saturday.
The city club were made to pay for their ill-discipline as half of the Sussex side’s tries came with the hosts down to 14 men after sin-binnings.
After his side conceded a string of penalties, Tom Sherson received a yellow for Canterbury and the visitors capitalised with the opening try from fly-half Ben Dudley.
By the time Sherson returned, Worthing flanker Joe Heaver had added the second score, with Joe Govett notching both conversions for a 14-0 lead.
Govett himself burst through a blind-side gap to make it 19-0 after 28 minutes but stand-in skipper Wim Baars produced a response with a try to reduce the deficit at the break.
After the turnaround, the city club added a second score after Aiden Moss and Scott Browne combined to sent Martyn Beaumont through for a fine try.
Browne missed a penalty chance which would have closed the gap further and after Jesse Liston was sent to the sin-bin, the visitors returned to the attack and Rob Smith made the extra-man count with a try.
Canterbury began to make unforced errors which led to Smith completing a quickfire hat-trick, with Govett adding two conversions.
With the result sewn up, there was still time for Baars to cap his gutsy performance with a defiant try in the final minute to register his second score, which Browne converted.
The defeat saw Canterbury stay eighth.
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