Hartlepool United's second string failed to impress after going down 4-1 to Gateshead.
Pools hosted Heed at Billingham Town's Bedford Terrace ground - the first meeting of the two teams this season, with another three scheduled, as the teams will also meet in the Final Third League Cup and the Durham County Challenge Cup.
John Hewitson led the side and had plenty of experience to call on with Brad Walker, Dan Jones, Jordan Richards, Adam Bartlett, Michael Woods and Connor Smith all starting.
Kieran Green was also in from the start after returning from his loan stint at Frickley Athletic.
Gateshead started positively with Adam Wrightson allowed time and space to get in behind the Pools defence only to see his effort well saved by Trevor Carson's understudy, ex-Gateshead stopper Bartlett.
Jack Blackford then wasted two good openings for Pools, shooting straight at the keeper from 20-yards before seeing a weak attempt easily saved.
Pools were made to pay when Mechak Kanda slotted the ball under Bartlett to open the scoring. Pools' afternoon got worse when Woods was then forced off injured.
And it was soon 2-0. Wrightson again allowed to run inside before finishing well into the left-hand corner of the net to make it 2-0 at the break.
Pools pulled one back at a rain-soaked Bedford Terrace, sub Dylan Elliott taking advantage of good work by Smith before tapping the ball in.
Gateshead didn't panic though and soon extended their lead, first through Josh Ackroyd, who picked up the loose ball before bending the ball into the top corner of the net.
Wrightson, enjoying a good afternoon for the visitors, grabbed his second from outside the area to make it 4-1 and cap a miserable afternoon for the reserves.
Pools: Bartlett, Richards, Howes, Green, Cunningham, Jones, Woods, Walker, Smith, Nelson-Addy, Blackford.
Subs: Dawson, Travers, Elliott, Jewson, Turnbull.