Jets hit back in close loss
YOU can't give the ladder leaders an 18-point lead and still expect to win.
That the Ipswich Jets almost did against Wynnum-Manly at the North Ipswich Reserve on Saturday says much about their potential.
That they trailed 24-6 at half-time and have lost to each of the Queensland Cup's top four teams this season indicates they are not title contenders yet.
Ipswich started the game like they were.
Kurtis Lingwoodock opened the scoring when he strolled through a huge gap near the Seagulls line, courtesy of a superb Ian Lacey pass.
But the Jets then paid the price for penalties, dropped balls and inexplicable lapses.
Wynnum-Manly struck back when a kick into the Ipswich in-goal was uncontested by any Jets players and Seagulls lock and captain Luke Dalziel-Don caught it easily to score.
A penalty conceded by the Jets gave the Seagulls field position for their second try.
Wynnum-Manly's third came after the Jets knocked on 25m from their own line and the fourth from the set following the restart.
"There were some real uncharacteristic tries scored against us," Jets co-coach Shane Walker said.
"We'll need to have a look at the tape to understand why.
"There was a couple of things we need to fix up.
"Our fifth-and-last options weren't on the mark and we just weren't getting the numbers in the tackle we needed.
"The good thing is we fixed it up at half-time and got ourselves back into the game."
To most outside the dressing rooms it seemed Ipswich's second half-presence was required only to complete the formalities as the Seagulls claimed their ninth win from 10 matches.
"It was one of those games, when we came in at half-time we were wondering 'How'd we find ourselves in this position'," Walker said.
"It was always going to be a matter of whether time would beat us."
Ipswich's intent was shown when winger Ramon Filipine dragged three defenders over the try-line four minutes after the break.
"He's playing out of this world," Walker said of Filipine.
"The tries are the reward but it's the hard work he does. The go forward he gives is the sort that Glenn Lazarus used to."
Ipswich had regained the ascendency and was causing Wynnum-Manly trouble across the park.
But a runaway try against the run-of-play, from a Jets dropped ball with 25 minutes remaining, gave Wynnum the breathing space that would get them home.
Ipswich scored three more tries but left its run too late, going down 32-28.
"There were definitely more positives (than negatives)," Walker said.
"Realistically it should have been a comfortable win in hindsight."
STATE OF PLAY
The Jets loss to Wynnum-Manly means they have slipped from seventh to eighth on the ladder, with Norths overtaking them following the Devils' win over Northern Pride. Ipswich hosts Norths at the North Ipswich Reserve this Saturday and could climb to sixth with a win.