THREE-NIL scorelines are proving to be popular for Bala Town at this early stage of the season.
Eight days after seeing off Newtown by that scoreline to open their Welsh Premier League campaign, a three-goal reverse was on the menu for the Lakesiders during their Saturday evening visit to defending champions The New Saints.
The home side will have been desperate for the three points following their hefty 5-2 loss at Bangor City to begin the campaign.
Andrai Jones, Anthony Stephens and Ian Sheridan came into the Bala side that won against Newtown on the opening night of the season, replacing Les Davies, Mike Hayes and Stuart Jones.
As normally is the case, the Saints were quickly out of the blocks with their pressing attacking play forcing the Lakesiders to work hard from the outset.
Wes Fletcher had the best chance for the home side in the opening quarter-of-an-hour when he flicked an effort wide of the upright.
In further action, Town were forced into a goalline block from Lee Owens as the pressure was cranked up.
Even so, Town could have opened the scoring when good work in midfield allowed Chris Venables to put a fantastic delivery towards the back post, but Bala couldn’t capitalise on the opportunity.
Evan Horwood drove an effort from range over the crossbar before the interval.
It turned out to be a half that was quite uneventful from the point of view of both sides, but there was a pleasing defensive performance by the Lakesiders.
A chance fell to Bala’s Nathan Burke following the restart, but his attempt went wide of the post.
This was followed by Jordan Evans’ low strike fizzing past the upright from 25 yards out.
However, it was the home side who broke the deadlock after 57 minutes.
Robbie Parry’s corner kick arrived to an unmarked Blaine Hudson and he headed the ball into the left hand corner of the net.
Just six minutes later and it was 2-0. Wes Fletcher burst into the area and smashed the ball into the net from close range.
A triple substitution from the visitors saw Davies, Hayes and Will Bell take the places of Andrai Jones, Jordan Evans and Anthony Stephens.
Evans and Stephens were forced off due to injury.
The changes didn’t result in a more positive mood from the Lakesiders and the New Saints added their third goal of the contest after 72 minutes.
Wes Fletcher looped the ball into the far corner of the net from the edge of the box after spotting Bala keeper Ashley Morris off his line.
A few half-chances fell to Town after this.
A free kick from Chris Venables was deflected behind for a corner, while Hayes and Burke combined, but home number one Harrison was able to gather.
In addition, a cracking ball came to Hayes unmarked, but he wasn’t able to side-foot it goalwards and the chance went begging.