IT IS often heard said in sport that the final scoreline does not tell the whole story, which was the case for the Emerald Eagles in their CQ Premier League match at the weekend.
The Eagles lost 6-nil to top-of-the-ladder Clinton in Gladstone, but despite a second-half blow out, Emerald was able to keep the reigning premiers scoreless for the better part of an hour.
Player James Barley said a number of factors contributed to the disappointing loss but gave Clinton the credit due, admitting Gladstone was not the reigning premier for nothing.
"We were missing five to six players in the first grade. It's never easy to travel four and a half hours, have missing players and bad ref calls. It all ultimately produced a bad result," Barley said.
"We held in the first half but unfortunately 10 minutes into the second we had a penalty against us.
"The decision turned the tide of the game and we never recovered."
Barley said Emerald had gone into the game quietly confident they could get the better of Clinton.
"We took four to five players from the reserve side. They stepped up and played well," he said. "It was a tough day to have the result end up as it did."
The Emerald reserve league team also recorded a loss as Barley said they, too, went down in similar fashion to the first grade side, losing 4-1.
"Again they (only) played 45 minutes of the first half," he said. "It was a similar sort of thing - the combination of a long trip and losing their better players to first grade."
The Eagles will have to settle into a travelling routine if they want to reach the finals with the next two out of the final four matches to be played away.
They head to Rockhampton to play Frenchville on Saturday, a team that beat them 5-3 at home in Emerald last time they met.
"We will build up our confidence again. Most of those missing players will be back again," Barley said.
"We know what to expect and hopefully we will get a result."
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