The nature of Tasmania's narrow wildcard defeat that has ended the Devils' year for good on Sunday proved indicative of their inaugural under-18s campaign.
Near enough was not good enough once again, Calder Cannons knocking out the Tasmanians in the 9.9 (63) to 7.15 (57) win at Craigieburn.
It was the Devils' fifth loss by single figures this year.
The six-point defeat - one of three times Tasmania fell short by a goal or less - was the closest of the five wildcard matches that ensured the winners joined the top three sides in the finals series.
The rookies have finished the NAB League season falling late to second-last with four wins and 12 defeats.
Inaccuracy hurt them this time after five more forward entries and 45 tackles to 30.
ELSEWHERE IN SPORT
The Devils were four points behind at quarter-time and level at the half despite six extra shots resulting in 2.9.
Tasmania nailed four goals to three in the next term - including three in five minutes - to hit the front twice ahead of three-quarter time.
But the Cannons kicked the next three goals to win.
Matt McGuinness proved outstanding with 25 disposals, five marks and one goal.
Skipper Jared Dakin had a terrific return from injury.
The Launceston midfielder picked up 23 possessions, three tackles and a goal.
Do you know a junior sports star who calls Northern Tasmania home? Nominate them today.
While you're with us, did you know that you can now sign up to receive breaking news updates direct to your inbox? Sign up here.
Subscriptions are available here.