THE Griffith Blacks reserve graders couldn't match the winning efforts of the club's senior side on Saturday, going down 18-17 to Tumut in their Southern Inland Rugby Union elimination final in Wagga.
After beating Tumut convincingly a month ago, the Blacks carried plenty of confidence into the do-or-die clash but left their best form in the competition rounds.
A lack of discipline cost the Blacks near the end of the match, a sin-binning and five penalties in the final 15 minutes making the job too difficult.
Blacks reserve grade coach Daryl Prince said his team was its own worst enemy.
"You could see the disappointment on the boys' faces at the end," he said.
"The boys felt they probably should have scored more points, but execution let us down.
"We were dropping balls and pushing passes.
"We probably didn't show enough respect to the opposition." Prince said there weren't any signs before kick-off the Blacks would be off their game.
"They're a pretty casual bunch of guys," he said.
"I always get nervous before games, even back when I was playing.
"But there wasn't any tension or anything like that.
"But you've got to give credit to the opposition as well. They came out and played some good rugby."
Despite the Blacks' early finals exit, Prince is proud of everything his players achieved this season.
"We went one better than we did last year in making the finals," he said.
"As I said, they were disappointed to lose, but hopefully it can spur the boys on to come back next year and do a little better.
"Sometimes it takes three or four years to build a group."
In the women's seven-a-side qualifying final, Wagga Ag College beat Griffith 21-15.