The Warriors left Toyota Stadium in Cronulla last night ruing their inability to close the game out against a Sharks side that were 11-points behind with less than 15 minutes remaining on the clock.
Two tries in five minutes to Sharks halfback Jeff Robson brought his side back to claim a 20-19 win that dashed the visitors' hopes of achieving back-to-back away wins for the first time this season.
Warriors coach Brian McClennan conceded the loss was hard to swallow after a 51st-minute try to centre Konrad Hurrell and a James Maloney penalty goal seven minutes later looked to have them on course for victory.
"Yeah, it was," McClennan said at the post-match media conference. "No one likes to go down and lose any game by those small margins.
"We had a belief and we were going fairly well during the match. We just didn't execute well enough at the end of the day."
Skipper Simon Mannering lamented his sides lack of composure in the final moments, when they rolled the dice hoping to score a try when a field goal would have sent the match into golden point extra time.
"It was probably something we should've taken care of a bit better," Mannering admitted. "Instead of shifting it from one side of the field to the other, it would've been better to be a bit more conservative and taken it towards the posts, but definitely a lesson learned."
Halfback Shaun Johnson blamed himself for chancing his arm with some last ditch attacking plays, instead of recognising the need for a one-pointer.
"To be honest, that's the thing I'm probably most gutted about," Johnson said. "As a half, you've got to be thinking about that kind of stuff, but I was just thinking 'try' and I genuinely thought we could score a try. It's something I'm definitely going to have to get sorted."
Johnson reluctantly acknowledged that others could have provided the direction and leadership in those last minutes, but as the team's chief playmaker, he felt it was his responsibility to produce the winning plays.
"At the end of the day, I'm the halfback and I'd like to think I play a big role, whether we lose or we win, so this one hurts," he said
Johnson was angry the Warriors had returned to some bad habits from earlier rounds, when they let leads slip against the Tigers and Storm, saying it was galling to see the same issues reappear once more.
"Just to go over the same stuff again, especially stuff we talked about. Last week, when we played, we executed things we talked about and this week we were doing the opposite, so very disappointing."
On a positive note, veteran lock Micheal Luck returned to action, and although he and prop Ben Matulino departed with knee and sternum complaints respectively, both will be fine for their Round 17 clash against the Cowboys, following next week's bye.
McClennan also praised debutant winger Omar Slaimankhel, who bounced back from an early error that led to the Sharks' first try and was a solid contributor for the side.
"He did really well, because his first involvement was an error and to come back from that is very difficult for a young guy. I thought he showed a lot of fortitude in how he came back and competed in the rest of the game."