Newcastle made it three victories out of six so far in the Premiership season as they edged struggling Bristol 19-14 at Kingston Park.
The hosts scored all their points in the first-half of the match and looked to have the points sewn up against a Bristol side searching for their first win of the season.
However, a second-half comeback fell just short of getting anything more than a losing bonus point, the least the visitors deserved for their efforts in the second 40.
Bristol proved to be their own worst enemies when it came to opening the scoring, with Juan Pablo Socino making the most of a handling error at the back to go over and put the hosts in the lead, though the attempted conversion from Mike Delany bounced back off the post.
However, Delany would make no mistake with the next conversion, which came after Will Welch dotted down after an attack on the break.
The visitors did have an opportunity to get themselves on the first-half scoresheet, but a penalty from all of 38 metres out fizzed wide, and they were soon made to pay.
Joel Hodgson combined well with Delany with the former getting beyond the lacklustre Bristol defence to crash over, with the latter kicking through the posts from the tee to send the hosts into half time with a 19-0 lead.
If Newcastle thought their first-half performance alone was enough for all the points, they were sorely mistaken as Bristol came out for the second 40 fighting, with Jon Fisher crossing for the visitors after sustained pressure from his side, with the conversion also going Bristol's way.
Bristol knew that penalties alone would not be enough as they clawed their way back into the game, and Mitch Eadie duly delivered the try they craved following fine work on the ball from Jonathan Fisher. Adrian Jarvis converted to put just five points between the sides headed into the final quarter of what had fast become an enthralling contest.
However, the momentum somewhat stalled headed into the final few minutes with chances few and far between, and Bristol were unable to add anything more than the losing bonus point to take on the long journey home.
Tries: Socino, Welch, Hodgson
Cons: Delany 2
Tries: Fisher, Eadie
Cons: Jarvis 2
Newcastle Falcons: 15 Simon Hammersley, 14 Alex Tait, 13 Dominic Waldouck, 12 Juan Pablo Socino, 11 Sinoti Sinoti, 10 Mike Delany, 9 Michael Young, 8 Ally Hogg, 7 Will Welch (c), 6 Mark Wilson, 5 Evan Olmstead, 4 Calum Green, 3 David Wilson, 2 Scott Lawson, 1 Rob Vickers
Replacements: 16 Ben Sowrey, 17 Alex Rogers, 18 Jon Welsh, 19 Will Witty, 20 Daniel Temm, 21 Sonatane Takulua, 22 Joel Hodgson, 23 Belisario Agulla
Bristol: 15 Jordan Williams, 14 Ryan Edwards, 13 Jack Tovey, 12 Will Hurrell, 11 David Lemi, 10 Tusi Pisi, 9 Will Cliff, 8 Jordan Crane, 7 Jack Lam (c), 6 Mitch Eadie, 5 Mark Sorenson, 4 Ben Glynn, 3 Anthony Perenise, 2 Ross McMillan, 1 Kyle Traynor
Replacements: 16 Max Crumpton, 17 Ryan Bevington, 18 Gaston Cortes, 19 James Phillips, 20 Jon Fisher, 21 Rhodri Williams, 22 Adrian Jarvis, 23 Jack Wallace
Referee: Wayne Barnes
Assistant Referees: Peter Alla, Steve Lee
TMO: Sean Davey