IVYBRIDGE coach Lewis Paterson was delighted his team got off to a winning start in National Three South West.
The Cross-in-Hand side, who have claimed two consecutive promotions, beat Old Patesians 13-9 at home in front of a large crowd.
Forward Alex Hall (pictured above) got them off to a dream beginning with a try in the opening minute, with Matt Grieveson accounting for their other points, including a monster drop-goal.
“I’m very, very delighted,” said Paterson.
“It was not pretty at times, but rugby isn’t always, but it was a really, really positive start for us.
“There are so many things for us to take from it.
“It was our first game – our first test – at this level and there were plenty of positives.
“Old Patesians are very experienced at National Three level and we’ve just taken their scalp.
“It would be naïve to say yet we can compete at this level because it is just one game, but we’ll just take it week by week.”
Paterson admitted Hall’s early score settled any nerves about their debut at level five.
“It was a fantastic start and took a lot of pressure off scoring in that first 45 seconds. It did settle the nerves a little.
“It was so nice to be on the winning side. I still feel we could have scored a few more points, but you are always going to be a bit rusty in the first game.
“It’s good to know that we could have been more clinical and could have played even better.
“It was our first game and we got the win, so job done. We can work on that now.”
What also pleased Paterson and all the players was the good support the club had on their National Three debut.
“We had a really good crowd,” he said. “We also had a second team game and they won as well against a strong Crediton side.
“But we are now getting really strong support from the Ivybridge area. Locals are really buying into what we are doing.”
Meanwhile, Plymouth Argaum, who like Ivybridge have also claimed two consecutive promotions, also made a winning start to life in a new division.
They beat Honiton away 19-7 in the Cornwall/Devon League. Ieuan Evans scored twice for Argaum, with Jamie Burton also touching down.
However, fellow Cornwall/Devon League new boys Plymstock Albion Oaks and Tavistock could not quite do the same.
Oaks, promoted with Argaum from Devon One, lost 36-21 to a strong St Ives side, who were playing in Western Counties West last term, while Tavistock, who were relegated with St Ives, were beaten 22-5 at Falmouth.
Saltash, meanwhile, put up a great display on their debut in Western Counties West. They narrowly lost 20-14 at home to last season’s runners-up Kingsbridge at Moorlands Lane.
The Ashes collected a bonus point for finishing within seven points of their visitors, who are expected to be challenging again for the title. Lewis Wells scored the home side’s only try, with Max Venables kicking the rest of their points.
Devonport Services also have high hopes for promotion and they got off to a good start by beating another fancied side Wadebridge 29-25 at the Rectory. Fijian Keli Dainivalu scored two tries for Services, with Will Stenhausen and Stuart Baker also touching down and Matt Anstis kicking the rest of their points.
In the RFU Vase, Tamar Saracens beat South Molton 31-13 away, while OPMs narrowly lost 20-14 at North Tawton.