Chris Vidler was short of breath but he had an announcement to make: the Roosters finally believe in themselves.
Speaking after the Roosters made it back-to-back wins for the first time this season, with a 38-10 home defeat of Gunnedah on Sunday, the veteran prop said Kooty had found their groove after a stuttering first half of the season.
"We've come out and we believe we can do it as a team, not as individuals," Vidler said. "I think that's what we've got going in our favour. I hope it keeps going for the rest of the season."
We've come out and we believe we can do it as a team, not as individuals.Chris Vidler
Gunnedah, on the other hand, were struggling with a lack of "continuity" - including in key positions, said Dogs mentor John Hickey.
Up 10-4 at halftime, the Roosters dominated the second half after Gunnedah scored soon after the break, via centre Aaron Donnelly, to make it 10-all.
The victory - which followed a 34-14 defeat of Dungowan the previous round and included a try hat-trick by Kooty winger Jack Anderson - moved the Roosters passed the Bulldogs into third place on the ladder.
It also reversed a 46-18 loss Kooty suffered at Gunnedah in round two.
"We were just full of energy," Vidler said of Kooty's performance on Sunday.
"I think we've come off the back of last week's second half against Dungowan with momentum in our game ... the confidence is there, and I think we can get better as the games go on.
"We'll be in the finals - no doubt about it."
After Donnelly's try - the result of Kooty No.1 Jack Rumsby failing to defuse, in-goal, a Reece Jaeger bomb - the Roosters retook the lead in the 54th minute when No.7 Jordan Sharpe crashed through the Bulldogs' tryline defence.
Three minutes later, Kooty No.18 Leroy Livermore crossed from close range, it was converted by Anthony Smith and the Roosters were on their way.
Hickey described Gunnedah's plight as "very difficult".
"We've got a little group there who are probably at everything ... but the rest of them can't [be]," he said, adding: "But we're still in there. We need to see if we can put a team on the paddock next week; see who's left standing, and see if we can come out and fight."
Kootingal-Moonbi 38 (Jack Anderson 3, Jack Rusmby, Kyle Cochrane, Jordan Sharp, Leroy Livermore tries; Anthony Smith 5 goals) d Gunnedah 10 (Luke Boorer, Aaron Donnelly tries; Reece Jaeger goal)