Newcastle Knights Junior Representative teams kicked off the opening round of the 2014 season with mixed results at Cessnock Sports Ground on Saturday.
Both the Harold Matthews and SG Ball sides were competitive in their matches against Wests Magpies, but suffered defeats in tense affairs.
The Harold Matthews side lost a tight one 26-24, but can consider themselves extremely unlucky not to win.
They led for most of the match against the Magpies, but conceded a try with just 30 seconds remaining to have their heart's broken.
In the other game, the Knights' SG Ball outfit suffered a 28-14 loss against Wests.
Club Community Development Manager Laurie Clifton was on hand for the opening round at Cessnock and says both the Harold Matthews and SG Ball sides have plenty of improvement in them.
"Both teams were disappointed to lose," Clifton says.
"More so the Harold Matthews, because they played that Wests squad the year before as under 15s and they dominated them.
"At some stage in both halves it looked like they were going to run away with it, but their final execution let them down.
"The SG Ball were competitive as well and hung in there.
"Both sides have plenty of improvement left in them."
In other junior results, the Under 15s side suffered a 22-14 loss to the Greater Northern Academy 16s and the 17s recorded an impressive 28-4 win over Greater Northern Academy 18s.
Clifton coaches the 15s side and admits his lads let themselves down with errors in the first half.
"We started very slowly in wet conditions and couldn’t handle the football," he says.
"It was 16-0 at halftime and then the second squad went out and played really well and controlled the footy better.
"I did give them a little bit of a touch up at halftime.
"I was just disappointed that the core skills were letting us down, the one’s we’ve been practising since November.
"The 17s we were just dominant though.
"Our core skills are better just because we train more."
The second round of the Junior Representative season will be against Parramatta at Cabramatta on Saturday.
Meanwhile, the Under 15s and 17s have finished their full-time program and will re-commence in July.