Bath's Heineken Cup Pool Three campaign has proved to be a disappointment, with back-to-back defeats to Leinster effectively ending their European aspirations before Christmas, but they at least managed to finish the pool on a high on Saturday afternoon as two late Olly Barkley penalties helped them stave off a brave Glasgow fightback at The Rec.
An interception try from Tom Biggs and a rumble over from number eight Ben Skirving, plus seven points from Barkley's boot, had put the hosts in control at 17-6 up with their front five completely on top at the set-piece as a string of scrum penalties and powerful driving mauls sapped Glasgow spirits.
But wing Tommy Seymour and back-rower Rob Harley crossed for the Warriors to turn the game on its head and put the visitors 18-17 up, only for the Scottish side to display acute tactical naivety by attempting to play their way out of their own half against a Bath side down to 14 men after the sin-binning of scrum-half Chris Cook.
They were twice penalised, and twice punished by Barkley's unerring boot as the centre finished with a 100 per cent record and 13 points to his name.
McGeechan said: "The forwards were tremendous. We out-scrummaged them, our driving line-outs were excellent, from which I felt we should have had more penalties.
"Our discipline and patience was outstanding and they gave us a great platform all day.
"If the front five go well then the back row look good for it, so I give big licks to the front five. It allows us to work off that platform, to work quite hard on the back of our driving mauls and it was a really good, tight forward performance."
The four-times Lions head coach was less happy to have seen his side relinquish their hard-earned lead, as they had done against Montpellier and Leinster earlier in the tournament, but praised them for learning the lessons of those defeats to secure the win on this occasion.
"We got to 17-6 and were playing well so I was disappointed we didn't kick on, but to come back to finish strongly and get hold of the game again was pleasing and those two penalties saw us home," he said.
"Having not seen out the game in Montpellier it was important to win and the manner of it, with us controlling the last seven or eight minutes, showed there have been some harsh lessons learnt.
"We have lost games we should have seen out and that was the pleasing aspect of today, that we saw it out strongly."
Defeat ended Glasgow's hopes of dropping down to a quarter-final berth in the Amlin Challenge Cup, although they did finish second in the pool.
Head coach Sean Lineen was bitterly disappointed his side had given up a winning position having worked so hard to get back into the game.
He said: "It's very disappointing. Our ambition is to win games and that was winnable. In the third quarter we showed our naivety, by playing in the wrong areas for too long and getting penalised.
"We were playing against a team with 14 men and we just needed to put a kick in behind them, and that is down to experience and we did not make good decisions.
"Once we had momentum we looked dangerous but it did not happen often enough, a losing bonus point is just not good enough."
Lineen was also less than pleased with the pummelling his side took in the forward exchanges, and the interception pass thrown by Duncan Weir to gift Biggs his try.
"The main thing was the set-piece battle," he said. "We lost it in the first half. Our line-out drives and scrums were really poor, and the intercept killed us, it was an individual mistake and it is a killer.
"I have said to the guys that in the pool we won two games, drawn one and lost three and that is not where we wanted to be. In the first half we were not at the level."
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