A Nathan Rose try with 39 seconds on the clock created heartbreak for Junee at Laurie Daley Oval on Sunday.
Southcity scored twice in the last 10 minutes to down a gallant Diesels outfit and bounce back from consecutive defeats in dramatic, and at times controversial, fashion.
The Diesels were in control of the clash when they went out to a 14-6 lead with 14 minutes remaining before the Bulls fired back into the contest.
Jack Lyons responded to a penalty goal from Matt Hands almost immediately before Steve Tracey kicked a penalty goal of his own to level things up.
Southcity had a good chance with three to play but the resolute Diesels defence held strong.
However the Bulls keep coming and some strong work from Usaia O’Sullivan set Rose up to score the winner.
Junee captain Daniel Foley was disappointed his team couldn’t quite hold on as Southcity claimed a 20-14 victory.
“The boys worked so hard and for it to come down to that is disappointing,” Foley said.
“A couple of 50-50 calls that didn’t go our way I think cost us in the end.
“Our boys just kept defending and defending a couple of those 50-50 calls went against us.”
Southcity were all over the Diesels in the first half, but couldn’t skip clear.
Instead the two teams went into the break locked at 6-all after a late try to Rusiate Kaliseiwaqa after a pinpoint kick from Foley.
Foley thought it was a credit to the team’s attitude.
“It just comes down to our boys turning up again and just keeping on fighting,” he said.
“There were a few try-saving tackles from a couple of the boys and just them extra efforts kept us in the game.
“I thought we got ourselves in a spot to win it, but that is the way it went.”
Jack Lyons opened the scoring for the Bulls after three minutes, but Kaliseiwaqa answered.
The Diesels then hit the front when Trent Schubach scored six minutes into the second half and it looked as though they would go further in front when Timoci Vatubuli made a break only for the centre to be penalised for a strip.
Junee went further in front before Southcity charged back to move into second place, one win behind Brothers and one clear of the Junee, Tumut and Cootamundra.
Despite the loss, Foley believes it shows once more the Diesels can compete with the best teams in the competition.
“We showed today we can match it with any team,” he said.
“They are the benchmark still I think and we are definitely up there.”
Southcity captain-coach Kyle McCarthy was relieved to come away with the 20-14 victory.
“We were really lucky,” McCarthy said.
“We had enough ball but lacked a little attention to detail.
“We can’t be trying to score off first plays and hand the ball over in good positions so there is still a fair bit to work on, but we’re happy to be back in the winners circle.”
McCarthy thought added urgency was the key to finding the way to win following two tight losses to Kangaroos and Brothers.
“We had enough opportunities to probably score 100 points but we were pretty poor with our timings, panicked and handed the ball over a fair bit but it was good to finally hit our straps with five to go,” he said.
With the general bye coming up, Junee have to wait until the June 17 clash with Kangaroos to take to the field again.