It was an encounter that can only be described as dramatic, as the Dragons fought their way back to take the game to golden point – only to see Panthers fullback Lachlan Coote slot a field-goal, to give the Panthers just their third win of the year.
The win was some relief for coach Ivan Cleary, as well as Penrith, who ended a dismal run of eight successive home defeats, dating back to Rd 19 of the 2011 NRL season.
In light of Jennings being dropped to the NSW Cup, Cleary denied that the dropping was a message to all players, that they could have the same thing happen to them, if they do not perform.
“Our boys have been trying hard every week and it was going to come right at some stage,” he said.
“We have been down on a bit of confidence and although we didn’t get as much ball as we would have liked in the first half, it was probably a good thing to win that way.”
Dragons coach Steve Price was left disappointed at one particular play by hooker Mitch Rein, that led to a promising move coming to an end.
“We had an opportunity late in the game where we went left when the ball should have gone right,” Price said.
Dragons captain Ben Hornby quickly let him know about it – but said that the young hooker would learn from his mistakes.
“We had all the momentum going into extra time but made a poor play in normal time and gave away a stupid penalty, but you can’t play well for (only) 20 minutes and expect to win the game.”
To compound matters for the Dragons, both Nathan Fien and Michael Weyman went off with knee injuries, and will both have scans later today.