NEW Hartley Juniors’ ‘indifferent’ start to the season continued on saturday with a 5-4 defeat at Leam Rangers in Gateshead on a ground in which they have never lost before.
Hartley were in front on three ocasions with goals from Peter Ravenhill, Kyle Downy and David Luke.
But Leam levelled each time and then went in front 4-3 ahead only for Hartley skipper Luke to draw level from the spot with his second goal.
Having conceded six at Lampton Street two weeks ago, Hartley’s leaky defence could not hold out and conceded a fifth on the final whistle.
Coach John Maley said: “In pre-season the ‘new look’ defence looked solid, but the last few weeks we’ve been at sixes and sevens and need to tighten up quickly, starting with our mid week trip to Brandon.
“All our defenders are county players too and we know they are good players.
“Going foward did not seem a problem as we scored some class goals.”