It was a disappointing home opener for St Albans Saints in the National Premier League Victoria 2 west at Churchill Reserve on Sunday.
A big Saints crowd turned out to support their side, but Ballarat City spoiled the party, leaving with all three points after a convincing 3-1 win.
After a goalless first half, it was City which struck first after the break through Liam Harding in the 57th minute.
City doubled its lead 16 minutes later through Shaun Romein and made it three unanswered in the 79th minute after Nelson Salvatore bulged the back of the net.
There would be a consolation goal for St Albans when Luis Covarrubias scored two minutes later.
All eyes were on the National Premier League on Friday night with two blockbuster games.
It was a big night for the Melbourne Knights, which kick-started its campaign with a come-from-behind 3-2 win over Oakleigh Cannons at Knights Stadium.
It was looking a bit iffy for the Knights at half-time as they trailed by a goal, but three unanswered goals in the space of 25 minutes through Nikola Jurkovic, Kym Harris and Nathaniel Foster Bowen had them on track for victory in their season opener.
Green Gully Cavaliers lost a seven-goal thriller 4-3 to Avondale at Green Gully Reserve.
The Cavaliers took the lead after nine minutes through Kieran Dover, but that was wiped away 20 minutes later and they would trail by a goal at half-time.
Liam Boland did the damage, completing a hat-trick in the 65th minute to give the visitors a 4-1 lead. Green Gully refused to roll over, finding a second goal through Dover and a third to Valli Cesnik, making for a nervous final five minutes for Avondale.
In the NPL women’s, Calder United enjoyed a comfortable 2-0 win over Geelong Galaxy United at Keilor Park Recreation Reserve.
In the FFA Cup, Western Eagles claimed a 2-0 win over Melbourne University, while Keilor Wolves edged out Moonee Valley Knights 2-1.