Staveley Miners Welfare player-manager James Colliver said he couldn’t fault his side individually for their efforts during the opening day defeat to Bridlington Town.
The first day of the 2014/15 Northern Counties East League Premier season got off to the worst possible start when they conceded four times in the first 28 minutes.
Staveley managed to pull one back through Matthew Hassett in the second half but the earlier damage had already been done. Colliver said: “Individually, there were no bad performances out there, but collectively we just weren’t in it at times.”
Colliver mis-timed a tackle and upended Craig Hogg inside the Staveley goal area inside the first two minutes and the referee had no hesitation in pointing to the spot.
Ash Allanson stepped forward and tucked the ball away, meaning that the rookie Welfare keeper Chris Butt’s first touch was retrieving the ball from the back of his net.
Ombeni Ruhanduka, who proved to be a thorn in Staveley’s side all afternoon, doubled the lead after six minutes when he fired home from eight yards out after the Welfare defence struggled to deal with a left wing cross.
Worse was to follow as an own goal from Staveley defender Hassett made it three before a fourth was scored when Bridlington’s Eddy Birch scored from 12 yards.
Staveley did enjoy more possession and looked more of a threat after the break, particularly after the introductions of substitutes Michael Trench, Luke Walker and Michael Blythen.
The trio combined on the edge of the Bridlington penalty area before Hassett, wearing the armband for the day, scored as the hosts finished on a high.
A comeback never looked likely but Staveley finished with a flourish, picking up the pace, despite the fact they were already well beaten.
Staveley host Worksop Town in a FA Cup tie on Friday night at Inkersall Road (kick off 7.45pm).