PORT Fairy assistant coach Winis Imbi says the Seagulls' 34-point loss to reigning premier Koroit highlighted areas for improvement.
The Seagulls, who have dropped their past three games, are yet to beat a Hampden league top-five rival in 2019. Imbi believes the fifth-ranked Seagulls can fine-tune and match it with the best.
"With our forwards, we fell down structurally and had a disconnection," he said.
"Our midfielders lost that particular battle. In defence we didn't transition the ball out well and gave the ball back to Koroit too easily."
Koroit coach Chris McLaren said Port Fairy mentor Dan Nicholson changed the momentum.
"We doubled them in inside 50s so we had opportunities at certain stages to make it a bigger margin," he said.
"To their creidt, Nicholson's last quarter was unbelievable, he really dragged them back.
"He was electric and his clearance work was great."
Both sides had late changes. Midfielder Tom Sullivan missed for the Seagulls while Rhys Raymond (hand) and Tim McPherson (back) were outs for the Saints.
Premiership player Tom Mugavin and teenager Clem Nagorcka came in for Koroit.
"Clem spent four or five weeks in a moon boot and had one game in the under 18s last week," McLaren said.
"We were keen to give him more weeks in the under 18s.
"Tom was in form in the ressies and has started to show he is coming back to his best."
Have you signed up to The Standard's daily newsletter and breaking news emails? You can register below and make sure you are up to date with everything that's happening in the south-west.