COACH Scott Coleman will meet with the Hunter Wildfires leadership group on Monday to try and come up with an answer to their slow starts.
If they don't find a solution, their Shute Shield finals aspirations will be as good as gone.
The Wildfires went down 33-28 to Northern Suburbs at North Sydney Oval on Saturday.
The visitors conceded three tries in the opening 12 minutes to trail 19-0.
Again they found a way back, but fell just short.
Slow starts have plagued the Wildfires all season. Not once in 11 games have the Wildfires been first on the scoreboard.
"It's frustrating, that is for sure," Coleman said.
"We have tried different things. We have travelled as a whole team on the bus, we have gone the other way and had people driving, we have done different warm-ups ... we can't put a finger on it.
"The warm-up area [at North Sydney Oval] wasn't great but that is just an excuse. Everyone else warms up there.
"We are having a discussion on Monday to see what we can do differently."
The Wildfires opened their account through a driving maul from a lineout in the 21st minute.
Hooker Phil Bradford crossed for his second three minutes in the second half to cut the lead to 19-14.
Completing a remarkable comeback, winger Isaac Ulberg went over down the short side in the 49th minute to put the visitors up 21-19.
Norths hit back with two penalties and a try to lead 30-21.
Again the Wildfires responded and Ulberg went over for his second to cut the gap to 30-28.
A late penalty gave Norths some breathing space.
"We got two bonus points out of it for scoring four tries and finishing within seven points," Coleman said. "I can't fault their commitment, their attitude and want to play and not give up.
"We just need to polish up on the finer details. Not kicking the ball out from a penalty, our kicking in general was a bit off, a couple of wrong options, we had wrong numbers in a lineout, we stuffed up a kickoff and they scored, we dropped some easy passes ... we are just not playing to our strengths. When we do, we are awesome."
The Wildfires remained in seventh place on 26 points. The top eight qualify for the play-offs.
However, they will be without Bradford for the visit by Sydney University to No.2 Sportsground on Saturday.
"Phil busted a rib cartilage five minutes into the game and lasted 60," Coleman said. "He was phenomenal.
"He will miss Sydney Uni at home and probably Eastwood at Eastwood."
Ryan Hargood, who played with Newcastle club Hamilton last year, is the likely replacement for Bradford.
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