MITTAGONG reserve grade Lions will have another chance to make the grand final after a 24-22 loss to Thirlmere Roosters on Saturday night.
The Lions scored with three minutes to go but made an error in their next set to hand the ball over to the Roosters.
Thirlmere then scored a minute later to snatch victory.
Mark Williams (two), Hayden Wallace and Ben Murchie all scored for Mittagong.
Lions playing coach Corey Shepherd said it was a disappointing loss but was glad to have another chance this weekend.
Mittagong will also have the added bonus of home ground advantage with the preliminary finals held at Mittagong Sportsground on Sunday.
“It was pretty disappointing. We’d make an error and then compound that with a penalty to get them out of their own end. In the end it cost us,” Shepherd said.
“There’s definitely things we can improve on and we have to win (this) week.”
Thirlmere took an 18-6 lead before Mittagong hit back and closed the gap.
Shepherd said Williams (captain) was outstanding and led the fightback for the Lions.
‘He played outstanding in the second half. He ran the show, set up a try and scored a couple himself.
Shepherd said Shane Rofe played well at hooker on the back of Williams efforts and Jye Fraser also had a good game off the bench.
“We’ve got to play with more intensity in the first half.”
Mittagong will face Picton and Shepherd said he would expected a tough game on Sunday.
The Lions have a few little niggles to players including Murchie and Jack Marcocci which Shepherd said would have to be nursed through the week.
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