Cardiff Blues A ended the Celtic Cup campaign with a defeat but a much improved performance as they went down to Scarlets A at the Arms Park on Friday night.
Gethin Jenkins and T Rhys Thomas had been able to call upon a number of first team and senior academy players for the first time this season in some cases, with Jamie Hill, Dan Fish, Ben Thomas and Max Llewellyn all involved, while Macauley Cook returned to captain the side from the second row.
After losing three games on the bounce with big scorelines, the changes seemed to make a big difference against a Scarlets team that had already confirmed their title as best performing Welsh team in the competition.
The first 20 minutes of the game passed by without score, before back row Tim Grey broke through the defence and found Teddy Williams in support with the lock going over for an unconverted try.
Scarlets were able to hit back through Lewis Millin, with fly-half Ryan Lamb converting and then adding a penalty, but a half-time score of 7-10 was a positive one.
Lamb was again on the scoreboard early in the second half with another two penalties to nudge the away side just out of reach, but Cardiff Blues were not quite done in the scoring stakes.
Dan Fish produced a perfectly weighted chip for Dafydd Smith to grab a try, with the conversion going over to secure the home side a losing bonus point on the night.
Unfortunately it was not quite enough to lift Cardiff Blues A off the bottom of the table, but it was certainly a note of some positivity to bring the campaign to a close with.