In a bizarre twist in their clash against Iluka, the Tenterfield Bumblebees managed to score more tries than their opponents but lost.
The Bumblebees scored five tries to four but failed to nail a conversion in the round 10 fixture, going down 29-25.
Despite crossing the white stripe more times than their opponents, Bumblebees coach Phil Jones said his side’s performance wasn’t quite up to scratch.
“We got ambushed a bit,” he said.
“They had a pretty stacked backline.
“We probably didn't do too bad, that side beat Yamba a few weeks ago.”
The Bees sit third on the Far North Coast Presidents Cup ladder with 22 points, seven points above Iluka with Evans River soaring above the competition on 39 points.
“They [Iluka] don't travel but when they're at home, you just don't know what you're going to get with them,” Jones said.
We would build pressure and before we would capitalise, we would make mistakes – knock a ball on or drop a ball.- Phil Jones
“They were red hot, they were sharp.”
Errors prevented the Tenterfield side from earning as many points as they should have.
“We just didn't stick with our game plan, handed over too much ball which is what we didn't want to do,” Jones said.
“We would build pressure and before we would capitalise, we would make mistakes – knock a ball on or drop a ball.
“We had plenty of opportunities to win the game, we just didn't capitalise on them.”
Ben Battistuzzi’s two tries earned him three points and players’ player while Simon Lee, Matthew Duff and fullback George Jones were also standouts.
This Saturday the Bees are back on the road again to take on second-placed Yamba.
Jones was hoping to take a full-strength side for the trip but will be missing key men up front.
“We have got a few out with work commitments,” he said.
“We are a bit light on in the front row.
“We won't be full-strength against them and I didn't really want to go down there with a half-strength team.
“We will have a few out but we will just have to hook right in really.”
After the game against Yamba, Tenterfield will be back at home on June 30 against ladder leaders Evans River before hosting Kyogle the following week.
“We haven't been as strong on the road, our numbers are good but whether we can get the right mindset is the big thing,” Jones said.
“We have a good run of these games at home in the last round, we play the top sides at home twice.”
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