RUGBY Town suffered a heavy 5-1 defeat away at Cambridge City as Valley’s early season struggles continued.
Despite Roger Lee’s goal in first-half injury time briefly reducing the deficit, Rugby were no match for their opponents at Westwood Road.
The result means Valley sit 17th in the Northern Premier League Midlands table.
Rugby defender Keenah Rosser sustained a serious arm injury in the opening exchanges which required lengthy treatment and a hospital visit.
Cambridge were on top for the majority of the fist half and took the lead on 39 minutes when Lewis Darlington forced the ball home after Luke English cleared an initial effort off the line.
And the home side doubled their lead on 44 minutes as Joe Hood’s deflected shot at the near post just crossed the line despite the best efforts of Valley goalkeeper Matt Hill.
Cambridge made it three in first-half injury time as Daniel Cotton jinked his way into the box before firing a low effort past Hill at his near post.
Rosser’s early injury led to an extended period of stoppage time at the end of the first half as Lee reduced the deficit with a fine finish into the corner from 16-yards out.
However, Cambridge struck again before the half was over as Stan Leech finished Darlington’s cross from six-yards out.
Leech grabbed his second of the game after the break to complete the scoring with a powerful header at the back post from Mikey Davis’s cross from the right.
And Valley lost Drew Kear to a red card late on following a needless altercation with Cambridge player.
Rugby are next in action at home to Coventry Sphinx on Saturday, September 30 with kick-off at 3pm at Butlin Road.