WHILE they may have lost three grand finals last Saturday and missed out on the prestigious John I Dent Cup, the Queanbeyan Whites fourth graders gave their club something to smile about in winning their division.
They were easily the best performing Queanbeyan side on grand final day at Viking Park, sweeping away the Tuggeranong Vikings 37-22 and lifting all Queanbeyan fans on their feet.
It came before the Queanbeyan Colts went down 15-13 against the Vikings, while the second graders came close to defending their 2013 title in going down 26-18 to Tuggeranong as well.
It proved to be sweet revenge for the fourth grade squad after they conceded a try on the full time siren in last year's grand final against Tuggeranong, which levelled the scores, and with no extra time in place for fourth grade matches, they were declared joint premiers.
Whites fourth grade coach and captain Grant Jones never expected to play this season, but a high injury toll forced him to put on the boots one last time, and he could not have been happier with the result.
"We felt ripped off after last year, so it was good to come here today and get the win," he said.
Jones said his side's achievement was testament to the depth and strength of the Whites club.
"Not only that, but blokes out with injury could see we'd be better off with them in the finals, so they came back and did a good job," he said.
Colts coach Sean Debenham said his men would still hold their heads high after their two-point loss.
"Injuries really changed the dynamic of the game, there was a lucky bounce and change in momentum, and Tuggeranong won it," he said.
Second grade coach Sam French said failed execution had cost his men in their defeat.
"When you've trained since February and you've got a group as talented as that one, you expect to win," he said.