An injury depleted Great Western Lions have fallen short of victory in their first game against Glenthompson-Dunkeld in the Mininera and District Football League.
Great Western got off to a poor start but had pegged their way back into the contest by half time.
Fatigue became a factor in the late stages of the game and the Lions couldn't hang on.
Coach Nick Thomas was happy with how the team played minus a few small factors that he hoped would come as the season progressed.
"We didn't play too badly," Thomas said.
"We were hard at the ball and hard at the contest, you can't ask for much more than that."
In a game where physicality was at its peak, Great Western were pushed to their limits with several coming out worse for wear.
Bobby Garley was the first casualty when he received a heavy knock to his head, requiring three stitches.
Ryan Cullen had enjoyed a solid first half of running on the wing before he suffered as knock to the shin, while Leroy O'Brien, who had suffered a knock to the knee and a kick to the fingers, was also forced from the field.
Great Western became tired and were forced into making some simple errors.
"We did a great job of winning the ball, but our disposal just wasn't where it needed to be.
"We had planned to push up the ground, but we just ran out of legs and couldn't get back into our 50," Thomas said.
Great Western had more of the ball than their opposition, but didn't affect the scoreboard.
Despite the lack of rotation Thomas was happy with the efforts of each of his players and the way they ran out the game.
Glenthompson-Dunkeld were a well drilled side and used the ball far better than the Lions.
Rayne Salmon was one player who was effective for Great Western in his new role as the number one ruckman.
Salmon looked to have won the majority of ruck contests, helping in and under players like Cody Virgona.
"Virgona played really well. He started on the half forward line before going into the midfield," Thomas said.
"He just goes about it the right way, head down and draws the free kick."
The final score was Great Western 11.10.76 defeated by Glenthompson-Dunkeld 14.14.98.