A new look Barnstaple Town side got off to a flying start on Monday night in their first pre-season game.
Barum beat a Plymouth Argyle development side 3-2 at Mill Road, with Jordan Charran scoring a fine hat-trick.
Charran struck twice in two minutes with half an hour on the board. First a half-volley at the back post and then a curling effort from the edge of the box.
He saved the best for last though, with an acrobatic volley after 70 minutes which brought a roar from the 500-strong crowd.
Plymouth fought back with two goals in the final 15 minutes to set up a closer finish than the game may have deserved.
New manager Richard Pears said he was ‘delighted’ at the end of his first game at the helm.
“Loads more positives than negatives and some good things to work on,” he said.
“I had to chop and change in the second half a little bit which interrupted our flow, but I’m building a squad of exactly what I’ve said to everyone.
“What you saw out there were 20 lads, and we’ve got a few away as well, who want to prove themselves at this level.
“I’m delighted for Jordan Charran too. He’s a Barnstaple player and he’s good enough to be playing at this level.
“I said to him ‘you’ve got to go out and play your own game, this is your home club’. He’s scoring and he’s kissing the badge and that’s exactly what you want.
“I think him scoring a hat-trick on his first game back tipped off a great night.”
There have been plenty of comings and goings at Barnstaple over the summer. Monday’s starting 11 featured just two players from the side that finished the Evo-Stik League South West campaign last season.
Jed Harper-Penman and Niall Heeney. Ross Middleton, Shaun Copp and Jack Jenkins came on in the second half.
Despite the raft of changes, a swashbuckling first half performance will give the Barum faithful plenty to smile about.
But Pears said there’s still plenty to do before the season starts for real next month.
“We need to build together, we need to get to know each other and work on our formations,” he said.
“I’m not going to get carried away with today, it’s a good start – the one that we wanted and one we can build on really.
“Having a pre-season in front of that many people today isn’t what I’m used to, but I’m loving every minute.
“The only pressure I’m putting on us is within our own changing room that we want to do well and we’ve got something to prove.
“Long may it continue.”