NYC Newcastle Knights coach Todd Lowrie has credited defence in the side's comeback win against the Sydney Roosters on Good Friday.
The red and blue took until the final minutes of the match to snatch the lead from the Roosters, a successful conversion coming from Knights’ winger Kainoa Gudgeon to seal the win 22-20.
“First half was really good but then second half we weren’t so good, dropped a lot of ball and didn’t complete very well,” maintained Lowrie.
“We paid the price for it but to their credit their defence was really good and that’s probably what won us the game in the end.
“We managed to defend our goal line much of the whole second half and when we got down the other end we got some points.
“The boys were able to hold on until the end so it was a big effort.”
The under 20s coach believes their hard work at training to hone their defensive skills has started to pay off.
“I am always confident that we can score points, that hasn’t really been an issue for us over the first six weeks, but our defence has been an area that has really improved over the last few weeks,” Lowrie admitted.
“I think it showed in that game because we were behind a lot and it was pretty nail biting.
“We had a few injuries early on so a really big effort and we just got there in the end.”
Things were made difficult when Knights forward Viko Puliuvea was assisted off the field a few minutes after the starting siren.
“Viko (Puliuvea) had to come off after the first run, he hurt his ankle which he has been carrying for a few weeks,” explained Lowrie.
“We were without one of our middles for the whole game so some of the guys played some big minutes and did a really good job.
“A few guys were a bit out of position but did really well and played tough footy.”
The NYC Knights will now prepare for a couple of road trips for Rounds 8 and 9.
“(North Queensland) Cowboys and the (Gold Coast) Titans back-to-back, so we’ll get enough training in for the next few weeks,” said Lowrie.
“Hopefully we’ve got a lot of improving to do and can keep getting better as a footy team and get some wins with it.”