The Shepparton Bulls were unable to capitalise on some good early work against Bendigo on Saturday.
The Bulls led the Victorian Rugby Union second division clash by 12 points at half-time, but were overrun at Epsom Huntly Reserve to lose the match 29-38.
Team manager Theresa Ifopo said numerous incidents in the match conspired against the Bulls, with both teams set to lodge complaints against match referee Dan Charsley.
‘‘There were a few things in the game that made it difficult for our boys,’’ she said.
‘‘So with the circumstances I think we came out of the game pretty well.’’
The Bulls remain in fifth place on the ladder and will be looking for an improved performance when they take on Geelong this weekend.
‘‘We hope the boys can bounce back next week,’’ Ifopo said.
‘‘We need a win because we’re hoping to win at least two more games to make finals.’’
Meanwhile, the under-18 Bulls were handed a lesson against ladder leader Powerhouse on Saturday at Lofts Reserve.
The Bulls’ rising stars managed just 17 points as their opponents piled on 60 to comfortably take victory.
With third-placed Harlequins up next in another away fixture, the young Bulls must regroup quickly from the defeat and look to bounce back.
The female Bulls continue to showcase their improvement this season, crossing for another try last weekend against Powerhouse.
The final score was 5-45, with the women’s side putting in effort for the entire match.
The Bulls will travel to take on Moorabbin this weekend and are a strong chance to push the sixth-placed side all the way.