Captain Stuart Hogg believes Scotland must learn quickly from their disappointing Houston outing after losing to the United States in their latest summer international.
Blair Kinghorn missed a last-gasp kick for victory as the USA came from behind to win 30-29, despite the winger crossing the try line with less than two minutes on the board.
A penalty try and a score from George Turner had Scotland 24-13 up at the break but the hosts found their form in the second half to move six points ahead, bidding for their first victory over a Tier One nation.
Dougie Fife scored for Scotland with the clock in the red but, with Kinghorn unable to add the extras, his side missed out on the spoils having defeated Canada in their opening summer international.
ALL EYES ON ARGENTINA
Now attentions for Hogg and his charges turn to Argentina, who lost out to Scotland’s NatWest 6 Nations rivals Wales on Saturday, with the first-time skipper eyeing up a quick response.
“It was a tough one. All credit to America, they took their opportunities when they were there,” Hogg said.
“For us we’ve got to learn, and learn quick.
“We weren’t good enough from the get-go. We scored a nice try early on and after that shut off and went to sleep.
“Like I say we’ve got a lot to learn and we’ve got to do it quick because we’ve got another tough test next Saturday.”
VALUABLE EXPERIENCE FOR YOUNGER PLAYERS
Head coach Gregor Townsend made 12 changes heading into the America game, with Hogg captaining a side that featured two starting debutants in Matt Fagerson and George Horne.
Both made their first international appearances alongside elder brothers Zander and Pete and the sibling contingent started on a strong note when Kinghorn crashed over following an excellent break down the right from the skipper.
And the night improved for Scotland thanks to a penalty try, Peter Horne putting his brother, George, through after turning well in the American 22, with a high tackle on the debutant seeing Samu Manoa sent to the sin-bin while a penalty try with the younger brother in touching distance of the post.
AJ MacGinty’s two penalties kept the Americans in touch but the visitors added a third try when George Turner – who scored a hat-trick against Canada last week – scored his fourth try in just 85 minutes of international rugby thanks to a lineout maul, with his side 21-6 to the good.
AMERICANS BOUNCE BACK DESPITE LATE FIFE SCORE
But the USA fought back before the half-time whistle, thanks to Joe Taufete’e – who also scored just after the interval to help turn the game.
Thundering over from close range gave a much-needed boost to the USA side before the break, while his second score was a near unstoppable exhibition of power.
That helped the home team build up a head of steam, further emphasised when Hanco Germishuys broke to score into the corner.
But Scotland, who won three games in this year’s NatWest 6 Nations, were not done there as they spent the last ten minutes camped in the opposition half.
They finally got their reward through Fife, who scored from Adam Hastings’ excellent long pass, but Kinghorn’s tough kick from out wide wasn’t able to dissect the posts as Scotland missed out by a solitary point.