The Dons battled back from an 18 point half time deficit to earn a valuable bonus point from the tricky trip to Cumbria.
Hosts Whitehaven picked up where they left off in their superb 30-10 triumph at Batley last weekend with a strong first half show.
But the Dons rallied superbly after the break to ensure they returned home with something to show from their efforts.
The highlight of the afternoon for Doncaster interest was a pair of tries for the returning Tom Hodson on his second debut for the club.
It took Whitehaven just ten minutes to open the scoring through Jessie Joe Parker with Cain Southernwood adding the first of four conversions.
Lee Mitchell went over on 17 minutes while Jordan Burns and Lee McAvoy both scored before the break.
Hodson got the Dons off the mark on the stroke of half time before scoring the first try of the second half six minutes in.
Chris Taylor cemented Whitehaven’s lead three minutes later.
But the Dons were in the ascendancy and Lee Waterman pulled another try back on 59 minutes.
Southernwood slotted over a drop goal for Whitehaven in the late stages.
It could have been different for the Dons had a late try for Waterman not been ruled out for a forward pass from Paul Cooke.
But they did earn the bonus point when Sanderson crossed over a minute from time.
The point was enough to keep the Dons level on points in second spot in the Championship, though they dropped to third behind Featherstone courtesy of points difference.