After having North Coastal on the ropes twice in their opening game of the McDonald's Country Cricket NSW Colts Championship, Western failed to ram home their advantage and slumped to a disappointing, tournament-opening loss.
Western needed to step up their game for the opener due to the absence of captain Brock Larance, who was being rested after his recent Australian Under 19s Championship campaign, but a combination of poor fielding and excellent North Coastal bowling put the navy and reds under pressure for much of the contest.
Western bowled first and new-ball duo Tanvir Singh and Harry McGregor left North Coastal reeling at 3-27 after an inspired opening spell at Bathurst.
They then returned to the attack to squash a fourth-wicket resurrection from Tim Martin (68) and Jared Humphreys (56).
Singh went on to take 5-42 in a fine personal start to the campaign while McGregor (3-71) helped to spark a middle-order collapse to the tune of 5-53, leave the visitors reeling at 8-177.
But North Coast again lifted and Connor Cook (49) and Hayden Ensby (29) got their side back on track and helped the visitors post a competitive 244.
That became more-than-competitive after Western's top order faltered, only CYMS young gun Tom Coady (26) made an impact as they limped to 4-57 before eventually being bowled out for 223.
Lachie Coyte (38) and Dubbo's Ben Wheeler (34) had launched a rescue mission in the middle order which Cooper Brien (32 not out) and Hugh Middleton (23) tried to finish off at the back end, but they ultimately ran out of time and wickets.
While pleased with his own efforts in the match, Singh was much more focused on the team performance post-game.
"It would have felt much better with a win," he said.
"Personal achievements are nice. The focus is on winning the game and trying to get that five-for as a bonus."
Tuesday's games are all 50-overs-a-side with Western facing ACT-Southern Districts from 10am at Morse Park 1.