Lancaster City’s disappointing run of results continued with defeat to Marine AFC on Saturday.
The Mariners were 2-1 victors on Merseyside, with all three goals coming in the second half.
Despite a positive start to the season, Lancaster are now winless in five in all competitions and have slipped to 16th in the league, albeit with games in hand on teams around them.
Former Dolly Blues goalkeeper Felix Goddard and defender Nathan Woodthorpe started for the hosts.
Brad Carroll had an early chance for the visitors but his lobbed effort was cut out.
Marine’s Sol Solomon made an electric solo run, gliding past Lancaster defenders as he bore down on goal, but City ‘keeper Andre Mendes managed to collect the ball at his feet.
Around 20 minutes in, Christian Sloan found Kyle Brownhill on the left to create another chance for Lancaster.
The wing back cut inside, before launching an effort that went just over the bar.
Jake Connelly went for goal direct from a free kick as he tried to get his fifth goal of the season, but Goddard got a hand to his curled effort.
Mendes was called upon with 10 minutes of the first half remaining.
Louis White tried his luck from the edge of the box but Mendes was equal to it and tipped it behind.
Marine took the lead 10 minutes after the restart.
Solomon was the goalscorer in a move that started high up the pitch thanks to pressure from the hosts’ frontline.
Will Russ came on as a substitute for Marine midway through the second half and looked dangerous on the right hand side.
He made his way past defenders in tight spaces a couple of times but was unable to provide that cross or shot that could’ve helped them extend their lead sooner.
With five minutes of regulation time to go, Fin Sinclair-Smith doubled the hosts’ advantage.
He was given too much space to get his shot away and the ball nestled in the bottom corner.
Dom Lawson was a second half substitute for Lancaster and he was the man who halved the deficit with a bullet header to Goddard’s right.
Mark Fell said afterwards that his side were “really comfortable for 60 minutes”, putting in a performance that “overall deserved a point” and Marine’s first goal “changed the complexion of the game.”
“What we’ve done for that first goal is absolutely unbelievable," he said.
“It’s a mistake from two players who know exactly what we want from them.
“Dom Lawson’s header should be for a point.
“It’s naivety today that has cost us and that shouldn’t happen.”
Next up for Lancaster City is a home game against Morpeth Town on Tuesday (October 24).
Lancaster City: Mendes, Clarke (S Bailey 59’), Brownhill, Barnes, Grand, Gallagher-Allison, Sloan, Cowperthwaite, C Bailey (Lawson 74’), Carroll (Norris 59’) Connelly
Subs not used: Jarvis, Allington