The Batemans Bay Boars dropped their final home game of the season on Saturday, losing to the Jindabyne Bushpigs 57-19.
The Bushpigs jumped out to a 33-7 lead at half time, and cruised the rest of the way to keep their top-three hopes alive.
Boars president Matt Ryan said his side lost focus after their finals hopes were dashed last weekend.
“The coaches and myself were probably a bit optimistic in thinking everyone would still be switched on,” he said. “Jim (Roberts) said there were some really good individual efforts, but the effort as a team wasn’t there.
“You could see the difference between our team and a team trying to cement a top-three position.”
Ryan said the Boars struggled to contain Jindabyne’s forward pack.
“The forward battle was definitively won by them, and that set up a lot of their tries out wide,” he said. “On the other hand, it seemed like we had to put a lot of phases together to try and work the ball up-field.
“We also got a bit lazy in defence, and were a little slow to reset our lines.”
Ryan said the amount of change in the club over the past 12 months had a hand in the Boars’ late-season fade out.
“Being a young team with a big changeover from last year, it probably showed a bit of a lack of leadership in the team outside of the coaches,” he said.
The Boars will head up the mountain to Braidwood for the final game of the season, and Ryan is confident of a win.
“You only had to look at the coaches after the game to see that performance hurt them a lot,” he said.
“They’ll have a strong focus on this week. It’s a short week playing on a Friday Night, but no-one wants to finish the season on a loss.”