Glen Innes rugby product Alex Newsome once again thrilled his home region fans with another five-pointer in for the Country Eagles in Armidale.
The Canberra Vikings reversed last year’s result in a last-minute win.
The Eagles hit the lead early through penalty try before Newsome was delivered a pin-point pass to slip through the Vikings’ defence and score.
They led 14-nil at the break before Canberra mounted a comeback.
The Vikings bustled over next to the posts and then found space off a scrum for two converted tries to draw level with the Eagles.
The Country side edged back in front via a penalty but their lead was short-lived as the Vikings returned serve at the other end of the field.
Within the final minute of play, the Vikings found a gap in the Eagles’ defence and surged over the line to score the match-winning try.
Newsome said his side’s second-half let them down and cost them the win.
“A very disappointing result for us,” he said.
“We played really well in the first-half, defended really well and then in the second-half there were too many errors, too much dropped ball, too many penalties.
I always love playing in front of this home crowd and coming home to play in front of family and friends.- Alex Newsome
“You aren't going to win a game like that. We have shot ourselves in the foot.
“We lost ourselves that game, we were in the position to win it going into half-time and then a disappointing second-half.”
Of his five-pointer, it was the second Newsome has scored at Bellevue from two games.
He said it was good to cross in front of the home crowd.
“That was on the back of some good forward play and a good ball by Mack Mason so I was just happy to finish that one off,” he said.
“It was great. I always love playing in front of this home crowd and coming home to play in front of family and friends.”