The first competitive game of the Richard Pears era at Barnstaple Town ended in defeat this afternoon (Saturday). Barum were beaten 3-1 at AFC Totton on opening day in Evo-Stik League South West. Shaun Copp, Jed Harper-Penman and Niall Heeney the only players remaining from last seasons Southern League squad all started the match in Hampshire. After a goalless first half, it was the home side who took the lead, with Craig Feeney poaching the ball and poking it past keeper Robbie Powell. Barnstaple got back on terms shortly after the hour when Karl Rickard got on the end of a free kick to head over Totton keeper Shane Murphy. The parity only lasted four minutes, with Stuart Mott putting Totton back in front with a back post header at a corner. Substitute Nimes Pina sealed defeat for Barum with five minutes remaining, finishing off a route one move from a goal kick. Barnstaple have until Tuesday Evening to shake off the defeat, with Larkhall Athletic visiting Mill Road.