Penalty goal cements win
IT took the final kick of the game for Goodna to beat Ipswich in a typically tight Barber Cup clash on Saturday.
The Gladiators prevailed 27-26 in the wet at Evan Marginson Oval to solidify their spot in the top four.
Goodna claimed the win with a penalty goal on full-time that left Rangers coach Mike McLean exasperated.
"We hit the front with a try to make it 26-24," McLean said.
"From the ensuing kick-off, at the second ruck we were penalised in attack for sealing off the ball."
McLean felt it an unduly harsh penalty, given the conditions and that Goodna were barely contesting the ruck.
But Rangers had themselves to blame in that the Gladiators were so close on the scoreboard before the penalty, with the home team scoring a try from a Rangers' dropped ball and another from a charge-down.
"Our tries were probably better constructed," McLean said. "But they were typical Goodna - always in the game.
"And once they get their tails up, they're very good.
"They may have handled the conditions better than us.
"We tried to get it wide a couple of times but the last pass didn't go to hand. We probably should have been a bit more cautious with the ball."
Yet McLean was not unhappy with his team's efforts, knowing on another day he may have been celebrating a win.
"We didn't over-kick, which was pleasing," he said.
"Our set pieces were very good. We probably dominated their line-out."
McLean largely had second rower Josh Sio to thank for that. "He dominated the line-out and scored two tries," McLean said.
McLean was also impressed with how his scrum fared, given he called in a rookie replacement for the suspended Dominic Chalk and injured Rob Beattie.
"Two weeks ago Ryan Jackson was playing third grade," McLean said of his newly-promoted prop.
"He went really, really well."
Others to impress for Rangers were inside centre Vili Koroi and openside flanker Andrew Wookey.
McLean was impressed by Goodna, who had improved markedly since Rangers beat them in round two.
"Heta (Goodna coach Heta Pamatatau) has got them playing a good style of footy," McLean said.
"They're pretty structured."
Rangers get the chance to make amends this weekend when they travel to Springfield Lakes to play the Hawks.
The Hawks suffered a surprise loss to the previously winless Brisbane Irish on Saturday.