Illawarra coach Graham Shaw lauded his side's fighting spirit as the Stingrays twice came from behind to snatch a valuable 2-2 away draw at Marconi on Sunday.
Second-half goals from Daila Borg and Michelle Carney ensured the 2013 runners-up would leave Sydney with a share of the spoils.
"We never give up and we know we have got 90 minutes. We will do everything in our ability to get the result," Shaw said.
"The girls never dropped their heads, they never lost composure. They just kept playing the football they were capable of and got the reward.
"Sharing the points away from home is not a bad result.
"Three points would have obviously been brilliant but we will still go away knowing it wasn't a defeat."
The Rays had fallen behind in the match midway through the first half when Stallions star Alanna Kennedy headed home from close range.
But when Caitlin Cooper was brought down in the box in the 53rd minute Borg converted the penalty to level it up.
The Stingrays pushed for a winner but found themselves behind again with less than 20 minutes left when Kennedy scored her second.
But the seesawing battle had one final twist.
Shortly after the restart, Illawarra were awarded a free kick, which Carney fired home from long range to level it back at 2-2.
"They are a decent team and they have definitely improved since we played them in the first round. They got us in the second round, so with the draw I guess we are sort of even for the year," Shaw said.
"A draw was a fair result on the game because both teams had their chances. A point on the road against a team who in the last couple of weeks have had some good results is not displeasing."
The Stingrays remain sixth on the ladder on 22 points, but face two crucial matches against Manly United and Football NSW Institute in the coming weeks that could determine their finals fate.