Young Bailey Burgess scored with his very first touch in senior football, but it wasn't enough to lift Ballarat City to a long-awaited victory on Saturday.
Burgess came on as a second half substitute and netted City's second goal with a brilliant chip over Geelong goal-keeper Dylan Nikolovski.
His 75th minute strike proved only a consolation for Ballarat, which conceded three times inside the opening 30 minutes of the National Premier Leagues Victoria 2 fixture.
Denis Yongule (6), Matthew Thorne (28) and Paul Bogdan Nicolescu (30) gave the home side a 3-0 lead at half time before a brilliant strike from Daniel Angeleski (67) got Ballarat on the scoreboard. Burgess' goal gave City a sniff of a point, but in the end the match finished 3-2 in favour of Geelong.
Ballarat City manager James Robinson was again left to rue a slow start by his side, which has now dropped its past seven matches.
The team is now only goal difference ahead of bottom side Whittlesea Ranges.
While the NPLV2 competition takes a break over Easter, Ballarat City has an FFA Cup round five fixture this Wednesday night.
The City boys will take on Westgate in a clash at Morshead Park from 7.45pm.
At the same venue on Thursday night, Ballarat City's women's side takes on Preston Lions in the Nike FC Cup.