A failed conversion in the last five seconds of the Round 13 clash between Parkes and Forbes was all that separated the Spacemen from drawing with its twin town rivals on Sunday.
“I wouldn’t have swapped you places for the world,” Magpies captain coach Jake Grace said to the Spaceman who made the kick, Cameron Standen, after the game.
“Keep your head up.”
Forbes Magpies have moved into outright third on the Group 11 ladder with one round to go after the nail-biting win over Parkes Spacemen.
It was clear both sides wanted the win at Spooner Oval, and there were times when the visitors held a clear lead.
But the Magpies made a second half charge to secure the points as well as the Brendon “Stubby” Collits Memorial trophy.
Parkes opened the scoring, Forbes’ Jesse Wighton responded to even the scores at 6-6.
Matt Roylance added more points for the hosts to take the lead, but Parkes’ Joe Dwyer responded for 10-10.
Joe Dwyer made it a quick double and Sam Dwyer scored too for Parkes to have a convincing 20-10 lead.
Jesse Wighton scored his second for the day to bring Forbes back to 20-14 going into the half time break.
Parkes opened the second half on the attack, grabbing the ball from their own kick and charging to their try-line.
Forbes held them out but they came back quickly, Standen scoring in the corner to lead 24-14 three minutes into the second half.
The scoreboard didn’t move for 10 tense minutes, it was Jason Hoswell who broke through in the corner and Jarrod Nicholson added the extras for 24-18.
Forbes kept Parkes on the defensive for a time, then the Spacemen pushed play back down to their end.
Grace gained a lot of ground with a run down the sideline, setting his side up for a third Wighton-try.
Nicholson’s conversion gave Forbes a 30-24 lead with less than eight minutes on the clock.
Parkes pushed hard but Forbes’ defence held until – with just five seconds left on the clock – Joe Dwyer crossed for his third try.
All eyes were on Standen who had a tough job from the sideline, the kick was waved away and Forbes celebrated a 30-28 victory.