Barnstaple Town manager Kevin Darch said there were positives to take from his side’s second-half performance in their 5-2 defeat at Kidlington.
Four first-half goals in 17 minutes saw Barum find themselves 4-0 down at half-time, before Archie Reay and Harry Stevens pulled two goals back in the defeat.
Darch admitted Town fully deserved to be 4-0 at the break, but praised their second-half performance.
“First-half, we were all over the place and never got going to be honest,” he said. “It looked like we hadn’t played for a couple weeks, and before we knew it we were 4-0 down and the game was gone really.
“So it wasn’t a good start. In fairness to the lads, the game was gone but we needed to take something into next week, and they came out and did well in the second-half, but it was all a little bit too late because the game was gone.
“We deserved to be losing, we weren’t at the races. They looked fitter and sharper than us, first to every ball, first to every header, first to every tackle.
“Second-half we could have thrown in the towel but we didn’t. We did alright.”
Reay made history by becoming Barum’s first player this century to score for the club.
Next up for Barum is a home game against Cinderford Town Saturday.
Town were 3-1 winners in the reverse fixture in August, and Darch says their home form will be key if they are to survive in the Evo-Stik South.
He said: “Home games are important for us if we are to pick up points its more than likely to be at home.
“We did win their 3-1, but that was a long time ago and it was a completely different side, so that really means nothing.
“We’ve just got to try and take advantage of home games. We’ve got a young side that are good enough for 45/50 minutes, we just need to do it for 90 minutes really.”