BRIXHAM go to Old Redcliffians in upbeat mood after beating Newton Abbot 35-24 in the South Devon derby.
For a first outing of the season it was encouraging, especially as Brixham had to make do and mend in places.
With lock Luke Maggs likely to be out for a month due to injury and a shortage of cover, prop Gareth Williams dropped back into the row.
Despite the disruption, and the stat that 25 of Brixham's points came from kicker Ben Lovell, coach Dan Parkes knew where the credit lay for the win.
"We have struggled to beat Brixham for the last few years so beating them in our first game was a great start to the season," said Parkes.
"You have to put that down to the forwards. They out-did Newton everywhere and put them under the pressure that gave away the penalties Lovell kicked."
Parkes is hoping the backs will come into play more against Reds as that was one obvious area for improvement.
"We need to be a bit slicker in the backs and run through a few more phases," said Parkes, who highlighted Johnny Brown's performance on the run as one of the highlights of the game.
NEWTON Abbot need to look after the ball better against visiting Chippenham this Saturday if they want to bounce back from their defeat at Brixham.
Although the All Whites outscored Brixham 4-2 on tries, which was worth a losing bonus point, they lost the match.
The difference between the sides was Brixham kicker Ben Lovell, who had a 100 per cent record comprising six penalties, two conversions and a drop-goal.
Brixham dominated up front and while Newton had ball to work with it was often coming to them under pressure.
"We were beaten by a better team, whose kicker had an excellent game," said Newton's director of rugby Roy Henderson.
"Brixham's front-row outgunned ours and that was where the game was won.
"We didn't have a platform for our half-backs to work off so when we did get the ball we tried to hold on to it.
"The trouble was nowhere on the pitch was safe if we gave away a penalty, which we gave away too many off.
"Lovell was landing them from all over the place and we kept giving him the opportunity.
"Even without Lovell's contribution Brixham looked a useful side. From our point of view it was pleasing we scored four tries against them, so it wasn't all gloom and doom."
Henderson made no effort to hide behind excuses, although the neutral observer would have noted Newton were struggling in a couple of areas.
Regular scrum-half Matt Newman wasn't available – the Smith brothers Luke and Josh both had a go there – and player-coach Colin Stewart was on the bench due to fitness worries.
With Alex Moore and Pete Mortimore also on the injured list, Newton were well below full strength, hardly ideal heading to Brixham which is tough for any side.
Newton Abbot's tries were scored by Jason Keenan (2), Ed McGinley and Josh Smith, who also potted two conversions.