Tuggeranong Bushrangers coach Jarrad Teka felt it was a turning point for his team.
The Bushies fought for 60 minutes with a player sent off and held on for a 24-22 victory over the West Belconnen Warriors at Holt on Sunday.
Teka said the gutsy win kept the Bushrangers in the hunt for the top four. They're just half-a-win behind the fourth-placed Warriors.
West Belconnen coach Matt Gafa, on the other hand, said it would be a long two weeks stewing on the loss for his side. The entire Canberra Raiders Cup has a bye over the long weekend.
Things seemed to be going well for the Warriors until Bushrangers centre Wezley Alexander-McCarthy was sent off after 20 minutes.
From there, the visitors clawed their way back to a 12-10 half-time lead, before scoring two more tries to take control of the game.
The Warriors fought back, only to have two players sent to the sin bin for dissent during the final 15 minutes.
Teka was delighted with his team's efforts, especially second-rower Jordan Martin, who scored a brace, and middles David Fuka, Eneseli Kamuta and Jayden Thomas.
"We've been building towards it. Every game we've been leading and then we just get to a batch of 10 minutes and teams put points on us and we buckle," Teka said.
"I put it down to a turning point. We had a bit of faith in our structure and our system, and in each other, and I think that's all it really was.
"The boys just believed in each other and that's how we got the result."
Gafa didn't walk away with too many positives - other than his praise for Tuggeranong.
He was left ruing the loss of two players to the sin bin as they pressed for the win - one with about 15 minutes to go and then another with about two left. Just after they'd cut the margin to two points.
"We just had a bad attitude and got out-enthused, and they came out with a lot of energy and they played well, so congratulations to them," Gafa said.
"Everyone's got the long weekend off so it always makes the next fortnight longer.
"Never good going into a bye round on a loss, pretty disappointing.
"We learnt a few lessons out of that game. We've got a lot of young guys and they're going to learn what first-grade football's all about ... you've got to have the right attitude and you've got to be prepared to do the tough stuff."
AT A GLANCE
TUGGERANONG BUSHRANGERS 24 (J Pollard 2, J Martin 2 tries; M O'Malveney 2, J Heyman 2 goals) bt WEST BELCONNEN WARRIORS 22 (T Sloman 2, B Withers, M Uasi tries; B Graham 3 goals)