Cornish Pirates backs coach Harvey Biljon says their performance levels deteriorated as the game progressed in the defeat to London Scottish.
Pirates fell to 5th in the Championship after the 20-17 loss at Mennaye Field.
"They [Scottish] began to get emotionally charged up and started to play," Biljon told BBC Radio Cornwall.
"We started to make poor errors and made bad decisions - I'm disappointed because we had an opportunity to win the game, and we didn't."
Bristol's 30-20 victory over Rotherham saw them leapfrog Pirates in the Championship table, who are now 29 points behind runaway leaders Newcastle.
Pirates make the long trip to the league leaders next Saturday, and Biljon believes his side can go there without any pressure on them to perform.
"We'll just relish the challenge," Biljon added. "Let's go with the freedom to play, with an opportunity to move the ball.
"No one is expecting anything from us. Everyone's going to be talking about Newcastle so let's see what happens."