A century from Travis Dean (111) was the highlight for the Bushrangers, as they tallied the solid total after captain Aaron Finch won the toss and chose to bat.
Sam Harper (27*) and Scott Boland (0*) will resume on Day 2.
Marcus Harris (46), Glenn Maxwell (47) and Cameron White (57) all made starts, before being dismissed.
Harris fought hard for his 46 before miscuing a pull shot off Matt Kelly to D'Arcy Short at mid-wicket ending his opening stand with Dean on 113.
Maxwell again showed his glittering form, with well-timed straight and cover drives on his way to 47 at almost a run a ball, before he casually poked at a Kelly delivery and edged it to Marcus Stoinis at first slip.
White continued his rich vein of form, cruising to 57 with eight boundaries and a six. A loose shot brought about his undoing when he was caught behind off Simon Mackin.
Victoria went from being in charge at 2-229 with Maxwell and Dean together, to lose 7-146 leading into stumps, returning WA to the contest.
Dean's 111 was the highlight of the day for Victoria, with a chanceless 195-ball knock that included 18 fours and a six for the fifth first-class century of his career.
WA's bowlers toiled hard, with Stoinis taking 3-63, Andrew Tye 2-81 and Kelly 2-67.