Ryhope CW had a top-flight baptism of fire on Saturday.
Gary Pearson’s men were by far the better side in the opening half at Whitley Bay.
They went in ahead thanks to Matty Weirs’ 15th-minute strike, rounding the keeper after latching on to Nathan O’Neill’s astute through pass.
But Bay took control in the second half.
Three goals in as many minutes from Kyle Fryatt, Andy Robertson and Callum Patton just about sealed Ryhope’s fate and Callum Munro added a fourth on 56 minutes.
By now, Whitley were coasting and they went nap a minute from time when Fryatt scored his second goal.
Ryhope boss Pearson said: “It was a crazy game, a seven-minute lapse cost us the game.
“We controlled the first half, and we had a couple of good chances, but we lost three points.”
In Division Two, Easington Colliery have taken six points out of six following a 3-1 victory over Northallerton.
Mark Simms took advantage of culpable defending to give Northallerton the lead.
Aidan Goodey beat the wall and keeper James Briggs with a superb free-kick to level on the hour mark, then, three minutes later, Liam Gill headed in Dan Martin’s cross.
Goodey sealed the Colliers’ victory when he beat keeper Briggs with a clinical penalty.
Durham City were easy 4-1 winners in their derby at Brandon United, for whom Lee Guthrie scored. Andrei-Vasile Ardelean, Kyle Patton and John Fortune (2) led City to a first win.
Jonathan Wright produced a magnificent performance when he scored all four Bedlington Terriers goals at Crook Town – but still ended on the losing side.
Crook had keeper Niall Harrison sent off for handling outside the box on 14 minutes, but they still emerged 5-4 winners. Lewis Martin (3), Steve Malloy and Calvin Johnson netted.