Wigan extended their winning run to thirteen games thanks to Scott Taylor whose first club try secured a 33-32 win.
The Young Warriors side, of which an astonishing 14 of 17 players came through the academy had to hold on in a nail biting finish when Patrick Ah Van scoring a hatrick just two minutes from time.
Wigan were missing several of their significant players including England quartet, Sam Tomkins, Sean O’Loughlin, Liam Farrell and Michael McIlorum.
But determined not to repeat last season’s shock loss, in which a winless Widnes side claimed a 37-36 victory, the Warriors opened the scoring through Sam’s younger brother, Logan with four minutes on the clock.
Widnes hit back instantly, Patrick Ah Van crashing over after shaving his locks for charity in the week, Jack Owens’ miss leaving the score at 4-6.
Warriors debutant, Lewis Tierney found Iain Thornley before racing round to collect an offload to score, sending his famous father, Jason Robinson into ruptures in the stand.
Rookie half-back, George Williams then set up Anthony Gelling with an outrageous cross field kick on the third tackle in only his second Super League fixture.
Again, Widnes refused to lie down with Exiles representative, Rhys Hanbury sending in Adam Lawton to make the scores 10-16.
Hanbury then found pacey winger, Owens with a well weighted grubber to the right who in turn looked inside to second-rower, Frank Winterstein to level the scores at the break.
However they weren’t level for long with England international, Josh Charnley scoring a full length effort to extend his try scoring run to eight games.
Gelling thought he had scored his second but he was immediately told “no” by referee, James Child who correctly ruled that Thornley’s pass had been forward.
Cue Hanbury who tricked the scrambling defence by sticking hold of the ball in an overlap situation to touch down to tie the scores again.
He then sent in Ah Van who put Widnes ahead for the first time in the evening despite Wigan claims that the pass was forward.
Hanbury happened to produce an exact replica ten minutes later and a hatrick seeking Ah Van was hard done by when the video referee ruled he had hit touch in-goal.
Instead Wigan struck back, Tierney finding Thornley who again set up Gelling and after a drawn out deliberation process, the try was awarded. Charnley missed the goals and so the scores were tied again.
Sam Powell kicked a drop-goal to put Wigan ahead by a point before setting up Scott Taylor for a massively important first try at the club.
Ah Van finally achieved his hatrick two minutes from time and Owen’s fourth goal put them just a point behind again but there wasn’t enough time.
Widnes: Hanbury, Owens, Dean, Isa, Ah Van, Craven, Mellor, Pickersgill, Clarke, O’Carroll, Winterstein, Allen, Cahill.
Replacements: Leuluai, Lawton, Kavanagh, White.
T: Ah Van 3, Lawton, Winterstein
G: Owens 4/5
Wigan: Tierney, Charnley, Goulding, Thornley, Gelling, Powell, Williams, Lauaki, L Tomkins, Mossop, Hansen, Tuson, Burke.
Replacements: Hughes, Taylor, Crosby, Hampshire.
T: L Tomkins, Tierney, Gelling, Charnley, Taylor
G: Charnley 4/5
Referee : James Child
Video Referee : Ben Thaler