PORT FC coach Mick Brown has praised his team's heart after a narrow loss to Sawtell in a trial match on Saturday.
Down 3-1 at half time, FC put three in the back of the net in the second half to take the score to 6-4 at full time.
Adam Howell, Mitch Goodwin-Lawrence, Ben Foulis and the returning Sam Wilson scored for the host team at Macquarie Park as FC found its feet in the second half.
Brown said the first half killed the result for his team. FC gave too many balls away, and was guilty of making poor decisions.
Players covering unusual positions didn't help, but, Brown said, that was the purpose of trial matches.
Lance Dekker played centre back in the first half.
"The second half was a lot better," Brown said.
"They took a long time to get into the game."
Dekker moved to wing, and the cool head of Sam Wilson helped in the middle of the park.
Dakota Stafford and Aaron Grose worked tirelessly in the middle of the field.
"The hardest working two players out there," Brown said.
Ryan Johnson had an outstanding game in the defence.
A couple of missed chances could have made the score even closer. Dekker stumbled in the box as a golden chance went begging.
He was unlucky to see another shot curve wide of the goal when it looked destined for the back of the net.
"We're happy with 6-4. They're a good side."
FC had a mountain of chances in reserve grade, but went down 1-0.
"I think the boys that played in that, if they can keep coming to training, would be a good reserve grade side," Brown said.
"They had multiple chances in the first half, but couldn't put them away."
Goodwin-Lawrence and Sam Smith were the standouts in that game.
Meanwhile, Port United travelled to Nambucca Heads to play in the Challenge over the weekend.
Pick up Wednesday's Port News for more on the Green Bloods' showing.