IT had looked a daunting first week for Alvin McDonald.
He found himself pitched into battle against three of the better sides in Nationwide North with resources severely stretched.
But the injury-ravaged Linnets completed a straight hat-trick of draws for their new manager and edged towards mid-table security in Nationwide North.
McDonald had said before his first home game in charge that the effort of gaining a point at both Worksop and also Hinckley would be wasted if the team didn't follow up with a victory.
But Saturday's result against the fourth-placed team wasn't a bad result, although Town's recent form has, like Runcorn's, been better at home than away.
Over his first eight days in charge, McDonald's side compensated better for their selection problems in defence than in attack - one goal scored and one conceded over 270 minutes of football.
But the Linnets have always appeared to have more depth at the back and their second-string defence stood up to an imposing Harrogate front two.
Striker Marc Smith towered above all three defenders and his fellow forward Clayton Donaldson also has height on his side - as indeed did Harrogate in most parts of the field.
Runcorn's rearguard might have found it tougher against the shorter - and trickier - James Turley if he had been introduced sooner.
The Linnets, with Carl Furlong's debut being further delayed by his hamstring injury and their most natural goalscorer Carl Rendell succumbing to a hernia problem, struggled in attack.
But Nicky Young and Lee Kissock worked hard and, sometimes, the delivery to them wasn't always the best.
The Linnets showed midfield promise and came close in the first half to breaking Harrogate's hold on their own third of the field.
But Runcorn were never as fluent after the restart. For the last 15 minutes, mental tired-ness as much as physical fatigue, seemed to set in.
Conceding ground for the first time, the Linnets had to hang on against a Yorkshire side who had the better of the few chances throughout.
Runcorn had got so far in the game but, late on, the belief they could win it seemed overridden by a fear it might be lost.
The Linnets didn't test Paul Pettinger enough - the keeper making one save in each half.
The first came from a deflection to a Matty McGinn cross off Town defender Richard Dunning; the second was a 20-yard drive by Mike Garrity which initially deceived the Harrogate shotstopper.
Donaldson had the best chance of the match in the 39th minute, but McGinn cleared his header off the line.
Otherwise, Runcorn pressed the man in possession well, despite losing Peter Ellis to a gashed head as their defensive injury nightmare continued.
RUNCORN: McMillan, Carragher, McGinn, Nolan, Moore, Ellis (Ness 60), Garrity, Parle, Young, Kissock (Molyneux 72), Courtney (Durkan 84). Subs: Robertson, Wright. Attendance: 237.