Despite dominating the opening half, the visitors only led 12-3 and were then forced to resist a renewed effort from the Light Blues following the break.
Having added the Wanderers’ only try thereafter though, Joel Hodgson was pleased enough simply to head home with the spoils.
“We knew this Cambridge side would be very tough from the outset,” the scrum-half told SaintsTV. “They were very niggly, slowed the game down and looked to ruffle our feathers a bit.
“For a moment they got under our skin but we managed to regroup well and get down the other end to score.
“We then held them off well at the end as well, which is testament to the boys. If you look in that changing room there’s a lot of young lads and it was good to see them stick it out.”
A tentative and tight start had seen Cambridge take the lead from the tee but as the half wore on, the Wanderers started to take a grip of proceedings.
It was Tom Stephenson looking brightest of all and while a couple of breaks would initially come to nothing, the second effort put his side in a position to batter away at the line. Eventually Will Hooley darted over and added the extras and the visitors were quickly back on the front foot once more.
A sustained assault in the Light Blues’ 22 ultimately ended in a yellow card as the hosts struggled to deal with the pressure by legal means and a second yellow might well have been produced had the Wanderers not mauled Danny Hobbs-Awoyemi over during an advantage.
The impending interval would do Cambridge a big favour, however, and nine minutes into the second half the Wanderers would find themselves down to 13 men as discipline briefly lapsed while repelling the Uni’s own string of mauls.
Happily, they did enough to keep the home side at bay and when Harry Malinder splintered the Blues’ backline, the Wandies still a man down, Hodgson was back round in support smartly to bustle his way under the posts.
Malinder would convert, though a much improved showing from Cambridge finally had its reward when the forwards produced a driven try just after the hour.
It wasn’t to be the start of a comeback though and while the Wanderers spent much of the remainder of the game defending, they did so with relative comfort.
8mins CAMB UNI Pen Stevens 3-0
21mins WAND Try & Con Hooley 3-7
33mins CAMB UNI Yellow Smith
36mins WAND Try Hobbs-Awoyemi 3-12
HALF-TIME CAMB UNI 3 WANDERERS 12
49mins CAMB UNI Yellow Baker
49mins WAND Yellow Mercey
56mins WAND Try Hodgson Con Mallinder 3-19
62mins CAMB UNI Try Con Stevens 10-19
FULL-TIME CAMB UNI 10 WANDERERS 19
WANDERERS Collins; Packman, Stephenson (A Day), Waldouck (Hutchinson), Skelcey (Lovell); Hooley (Mallinder), Hodgson; Hobbs (Fish), Williams (Marshall), Mercey (Parkins), Woolford, Onojaife (Cardell), Conner, Ludlam, Harrison (Taylor-Dawes)