Leeton-Whitton is through to another Riverina League finals campaign after playing out a draw with Turvey Park at Maher Oval on Saturday.
In a dramatic finish to the game, the scoreboard showed a two-point victory to Turvey Park and the Bulldogs’ theme song beamed across the ground after the siren sounded.
But umpires soon let both teams know that the scoreboard was wrong and it was a draw, with the Crows 5.14 (44) to Turvey Park’s 6.8 (44).
The draw was enough for the Crows to cement fifth spot, and a loss ultimately would not have cost them finals with Coolamon unable to beat Ganmain-Grong Grong-Matong.
Leeton-Whitton coach Jade Hodge was happy to be through to finals but disappointed with what the Crows served up in the final round.
“I’m pretty disappointed if I’m honest,” Hodge said.
“We had 41 turnovers, which killed us. We just blazed away and played stupid footy.
“You can take positives out of it, we had plenty of inside 50s, we had a lot of the footy, it’s just that our execution let us down and our decision making was ordinary.
“We’ve got a lot to work on. I was pretty disappointed. We definitely didn’t show the side that I thought we were going to be. All the key indicators pointed in the right direction, we just didn’t turn up to play but we live to fight another day.”
Turvey Park led all day against the Crows.
The visitors levelled midway through the third quarter but the Bulldogs continued to find answers.
Outgoing Turvey Park coach Truman Carroll said it was a frustrating way to end the season.
“It was a very big anti climax,” Carroll said.
“It would have changed the game and we would have played a bit different there at the end if we knew it was a draw but anyway, that’s just how it is. I would have been rapt to come home with a win from a good game of footy. I thought we done well to get the chocolates but apparently not.”
Carroll said he is pleased with how his team finished the year.
“It’s a great reward for the guys. What we’ve been working on is coming to fruition,” he said.
“The young fellas, they’ve really brought in and are just peaking at the end of the season, which is fantastic.”
Carroll and Chris Cerato led the way for the Bulldogs, while youngsters Brad Ashcroft, Harry Woods, Matt Howe and Alex Carroll played well.
For the Crows, Will Wakeman, Sam Hopper, Tom Meline, Bryce O’Garey and Matt Rainbird were their best.
Leeton-Whitton will now regroup for an elimination final showdown with Mangoplah-Cookardinia United-Eastlakes at Narrandera Sportsground next Sunday.
The Bulldogs finished the season in seventh spot with five wins and a draw from 16 games.