TWO tries from Cowra Magpies five-eighth Warren Williams was enough to make Orange Hawks pay for a horrid completion rate at Sid Kallas Oval yesterday, with the home side coming from behind to beat the two blues 22-16.
The Orange side led at half-time 10-6, but were left to defend for the majority of the game after spilling the ball on a regular basis.
Although a damp day in Cowra, rain stopped before kick-off of the Group 10 premier league game and Hawks player-coach James Wynne refused to use the conditions as an excuse for his side’s abysmal completion rate.
He said Cowra just kept on coming.
“They made a lot less mistakes than us and they kept plugging away at us until we cracked,” Wynne said.
“They’re tough at home as everyone kept telling me and it’s plain to see if you drop the ball as much as we did and don’t turn up you’re going to lose the game.”
Hawks got the ball rolling through winger Justin Howarth and Kyle Byrnes to lead Cowra 10-6 at half time.
But Cowra hit back in the second period to pile on three tries including Williams’ second and four pointers to Phil Ingram and half Toby Nobes to lead 22-10.
A second half try to Todd Barrow, who was backing up after leading Group 10 to a big 48-18 against Castlereagh the day before, put the visitors within reach but they couldn't land a final blow, going down to the Magpies by six points.
Wynne was understandably disappointed at his side’s lack of execution.
“I don’t think we could have dropped the ball or have given the opposition as many chances any more than we did. To even be in the game with the way we played is a fair effort,” he said.
“The conditions weren’t the reason we dropped the ball.
“We tackled all day, especially in that first half.”
The former French international did, however, praise his backs, in particularly Group 10 centre Jared Brodrick.
“I thought all of our backline, especially the outside backs, played well” he said.
“Then we had our usual workers in the middle of the field like Lachy Sturgeon and Bunny (Glen Bunworth). At the end of the day, we just dropped too much ball.”