Low player numbers and ill-discipline proved costly for the Tenterfield Tigers men's team when they took on Uralla on Saturday.
Uralla were aiming to rebound from back-to-back losses while Tenterfield hadn't experienced a win since facing Tingha in round one. The home side raced out of the blocks to rack up a 34-4 lead by half-time.
Tenterfield co-coach Jake Kelly said once Uralla rocketed out to an early lead, it was hard for his team to claw their way back.
"Our first 15 was pretty ordinary with discipline and simple defence really," he said.
"They jumped out to a 22-nil lead within the first 15 minutes and it was hard to come back from there.
"We just kept letting them get good ball position through our mistakes and penalties which has been our story all year."
Kelly lamented the lack of players willing to travel didn't help in the 50-8 loss.
"I think we had seven players out or something like that so it was difficult without those strike players but Uralla just played better footy than us on the day," he said.
"You have got to play with who you have got there."
The Tigers are back on home turf this Saturday when they face a hot-and-cold Bingara Bullets team.
Kelly admitted he isn't sure how Bingara will line up but said he will have more players available for selection.
"I am not really sure what to expect from Bingara, they lost a fortnight ago 52-nil and then turned it around against Tingha on the weekend and had a pretty convincing win," he said.
"I am not sure if they are like us and don't travel or just had an off game. I think everyone should be back except for Jarrod McIntosh, he will be out for a little bit."
The league tag team were downed 32-12 by the ladder-leading Uralla side but in an even bigger loss, captain-coach Megg Landers is expected to be sidelined for a number of weeks.
She suffered an injury against Uralla but will still front up as the coach from the sidelines.
Landers highlighted her side's defensive structure as needing work and being key to being a force in the competition.
"I think we worked alright together but we have just got to keep working on our fitness and defence," she said.
"We have been trying to work on our defence, moving up together.That is what lets us down but we will work on it. We still have to work on that [attack] but defence is our main priority at the moment because we have been letting a lot of tries in through the middle from people not moving up."
Of the Uralla game, Landers said "Bre Field played really well, she's really fast and she's never played league tag before."