Snappers hope diabolical loss to Pirates can start a revival
EVERY season provides every sporting team with a game they'd rather forget.
In the case of Coffs Harbour Snappers, they are hoping the 23-20 loss to Port Macquarie Pirates at Rugby Park is the one where they hit rock bottom in 2014 and began the climb back to favour.
Truly, it was awful.
Honestly, the score flattered the home side.
Pirates were a 12-man team for the majority of the closing stages after referee Darren Jameson began waving yellow cards about and some satisfaction arrived in the shape of Waqa Yaya with his regulation try just before the final bell to make scores closer.
In short, the display was diabolical and without meaning disrespect to the visiting team, it was only their vastly superior enthusiasm that carried the day.
This Port side would have been smashed by most they've fielded in the past decade, such has been the slump in the standard of rugby played so far this year.
But ... oh, those Snappers.
From the moment they wandered onto the paddock in drabs and drabs it was evident they faced a challenging afternoon at the office.
"I had a feeling in the shed before we started that it was going to be difficult," coach Rob Waddy said.
"There wasn't a great deal of enthusiasm and it showed almost from the start.
"What makes it so disappointing is that the past two games, we really wanted to get out there and play great rugby from the first whistle.
"If you aren't interested in the first 15 minutes, it's useless waiting for the last five minutes for something to happen and things to go your way.
"We didn't make our own luck or make things happen."
Coffs turned down a gift three points from a penalty in the opening minutes that haunted them later.
The first try went to Port and with a tight game expected, they weren't too precious about kicking for goal and landed three penalties to lead 16-3 at the break.
The home side came out from refreshments and were on the scoreboard quickly when Stu McVicar handled twice in the movement before going over but from there, the game became an ongoing slog where Snappers were never able to build enough momentum to be creative.
They shed possession too many times in the first phase and as for the line-outs ... the less said the better.
Waddy hasn't indicated wholesale axing of troops but it's obvious some changes need to be made, especially with second grade showing plenty of enterprise.
"We have the bye next week but after that, I'll have to look at who is training and who is not," the coach said.
"It was an awful display and like you said, every year there's a bad one in all of us.
"Let's turn that into a positive and start lifting from next game."
Upper Mid North Coast Rugby
Port Macquarie Pirates d Coffs Harbour Snappers 23-20
Hastings Valley Vikings d Kempsey Cannonballs 41-26
Southern Cross University Marlins bye
Coffs Harbour d Port Macquarie 26-14
Hastings Valley d Kempsey 15-14
Southern Cross University d Bowraville Goannas 36-10
Bowraville d Kempsey 22-19
Coffs Harbour d Port Macquarie 40-19
Kempsey d Hastings Valley 32-10
Southern Cross University d Dorrigo Rangers 43-12