IT was again the story of the Giants’ Super League season.
Encouraging in parts and awful in others, as bottom-of-the-table Huddersfield slumped to their ninth defeat from 10 top-flight starts at Hull FC last night.
There’s no doubt there were times in the contest when coach Paul Anderson’s men did give their in-form hosts a real run for their money.
But there were others when they looked thoroughly unconvincing.
This was potentially yet another game that got away, with the decisive damage done in a nine-minute spell in the second half, between the 55th and 64th minutes, as Hull scored three converted tries and Danny Brough was in the sin-bin.
That nightmare period sealed their fate, even though they never once looked like raising the white flag.
There was virtually nothing between these two teams during a tight first half, with the hosts just edging into an 18-16 interval lead.
That hardly looked like it would be the case given the opening exchanges as Huddersfield once again looked nervous. Their lack of confidence was unfortunately clear for all to see.
As a result, it was no surprise when Josh Bowden showed great strength to crash over under the posts and Marc Sneyd converted to give Hull the lead after six minutes.
But the Giants response couldn’t have been better.
The early setback appeared to breathe new life into their challenge and they thoroughly deserved to level the scores in the 12th minute as Danny Brough fed Joe Wardle to stretch out and score.
Brough’s conversion made it 6-6 and five minutes later the visitors got in front when Gene Ormsby raced away and passed back inside to centre partner Aaron Murphy to finish off for converted score No2.
Yet Huddersfield’s inability to capitalise on a lead once again reared its ugly head as Liam Watts and Jamie Shaul both crossed for converted tries to put the Black and Whites back into the lead.
Fortunately, the battling Brough made sure his side remained firmly in the hunt at the break by crashing through a crowd of players from close range to make it 18-16 in the 36th minute, although he inexplicably failed with what was a straightforward conversion which would have levelled things up for a third time.
The start of the second period remained just as competitive, with the sides going set for set in a classic arm-wrestle.
And it took 15 tense minutes for the deadlock to be broken, with Danny Houghton touching down a Sneyd grubber on the break of an amazing Shaul break.
Sneyd converted, and with Brough sent to the sin-bin for dissent at the same time, the task for the Giants immediately became even harder.
Although 12-man Huddersfield did initially weather the storm, their resistance finally cracked in the 62nd as Curtis Naughton raced away to feed the supporting Shaul to dive in.
Sneyd’s goal took their lead up to three scores at 30-16.
The game really looked to be slipping away.
And that point was reinforced just minutes later when Naughton - who almost joined the Giants on loan at the start of the season - brushed past Jermaine McGillvary to score in the corner and Sneyd added the touchline conversion.
McGillvary made amends for his earlier missed tackle by showing all his strength to crash over with 10 minutes remaining.
But Sneyd banged the final nail in the Giants coffin by slotting over a drop goal in the final minute.
The agony goes on.