Zebre 11 Ulster 19: Paddy Jackson kicked 14 points and played a part in Darren Cave's try as Ulster beat Zebre at the Stadio XXV Aprile and move into a share of second place in the RaboDirect Pro12 table with Glasgow.
Gonzalo Garcia put his side into a 3-0 lead in the 10th minute after the home side were awarded a scrum penalty, but Ulster drew level on 12 minutes as Jackson opened his account from in front of the posts.
An Ulster knock-on as they were defending their line gave Garcia the chance to move his side 6-3 ahead.
Jackson levelled matters on 23 minutes after Garcia made no attempt to roll away and was penalised before the key move of the first half involving Jackson and Craig Gilroy saw Cave touch down for a try.
Jackson invited the challenge from the Zebre defence and produced a fantastic offload to Gilroy on his shoulder, who in turn was able to offload once more to the advancing Cave who then finished the move off under the posts, with Jackson adding the extras to give Ulster a 13-6 lead at the break.
Jackson picked up where he left off with two penalties to give Ulster a 19-6 advantage, only for Zebre to claim a try of their own through fullback Guglielmo Palazzani.
Jackson hit the post with a penalty attempt, but Zebre kept coming and were unlucky not to make good on a great break from Mauro Bergamasco after they were called back for offside.
Ulster’s defence held out in a frenetic end to the game and they join Glasgow on 29 points in the table.