Both sides made two changes from their previous matches, with Leopards bringing Lesedi Kapinga and Tshwarelo Bereng back to the side while the Chilli Boys threw in Zambian defender Donashano Malama to the fray and also brought back Andile Mbenyane to the starting side.
Lidoda Duvha were forceful in the early stages but United almost grabbed the lead in the 17th minute through Lerato Manzini, who’s header at the near post went narrowly wide following a cross from Zitha Macheke on the right wing.
Thabo Rakhale broke the deadlock for Clinton Larsen’s charges in the 26th minute with a good finish over the onrushing Leopards goalkeeper King Ndlovu after he was sent through on goal inside the box, 0-1.
Lerato Manzini doubled the lead for Chippa five minutes before halftime with a close-range strike inside the six-yard box after Rakhale went on a solo-run and played back a short-cross at the near post, 1-2.
Mwape Musonda pulled a goal back for Dylan Kerr’s troops with barely the last kick of the first stanza, with a close-range finish after their pressure in the last third paid off, 1-2.
The Chilli Boys were awarded a penalty two minutes into the second stanza after Marks Munyai brought down Tebogo Tlolane inside the box, but Ruzaigh Gamildien could not capitalise as his penalty was saved by Ndlovu.
Musonda levelled matters for Lidoda Duvha three minutes before the hour-mark with a first-time strike on the right side of the box following a through ball from Joseph Mhlongo.
Musonda made it 3-2 for Leopards and completed his hat-trick four minutes later with a brilliant header at the back post following a cross from Munyai.
Leopards brought on Thokozani Sekotlong in place of Lifa Hlongwane with 12 minutes remaining for fresh legs while Chippa introduced Tercious Malepe in place of Malama for the same reason.
Lerato Manzini had a chance at the back post to salvage a point for United with five minutes remaining, but he struck wide and Leopards held on for the three points.
The result moved them five points clear of the relegation zone in 12th place with 25 points from 22 games while the Chilli Boys remained second from bottom with 20 points from 23 matches.
Leopards: 22 K. Ndlovu, 13 Zulu, 2 Masalesa, 28 Munganga, 15 Bereng (Mhlongo 51’), 5 Munyai, 14 Nange, 3 Ndou, 12 Kapinga, 11 Musonda, 17 Hlongwane (Sekotlong 79’)
Subs: 32 Muleka, 4 Khutlang, 25 Mokoena, 29 Masia, 30 Mhlongo, 31 T. Ndlovu, 37 Sekotlong.
Chippa: 42 Mzimela, 20 Shitolo, 47 Nsabiyumva, 44 Komane, 4 Macheke, 24 Gamildien (R. Manzini 65’), 8 Rakhale, 28 Malama (Malepe 79’), 21 Tlolane, 7 Mbenyane (Makobela 63’), 25 L. Manzini
Subs: 34 Mothwa, 11 Mayambela, 12 Malepe, 17 Klate, 18 Makobela, 19 R. Manzini, 23 Maphanga.