Scarborough Athletic slipped onto the wrong end of a 4-1 defeat at Evo-Stik North promotion rivals Spennymoor Town on Tuesdy night.
Having kept up with their opponents in the first half, Boro were blown away in the second period by their confident opponents.
The result and the second-half performance will leave the Boro coaching staff with plenty to ponder ahead of Saturday’s home fixture against Ossett Town.
Rudy Funk gave an immediate start to new loan signing Nathan Evans, who lined up on the right of a packed midfield behind striker Gary Bradshaw.
Evans looked lively in the early stages, though he struggled to escape from the shadow of former Scarborough FC and Ireland under-21 left-back Stephen Capper.
Spennymoor were organised right across the park, causing Boro a few problems in the early satges, while Boro found their feet by utilising the long punt.
Boro then proceeded to shut off for a spell that could have easily seen them fall a number of goals behind.
Firstly Spennymoor took the lead when Liam Henderson was picked out on the edge of the box and the striker comfortably bent the ball beyond Jason White.
This kicked off a swift seige of the Boro penalty area.
Henderson scampered clear for a second time, but he lost his footing as he was about to pull the trigger.
White was at full stretch to turn over Shane Henry’s lob and then centre-back Joseph Tait planted a header onto the top of the bar.
After a huge sigh of relief, Boro finally got down to business and they fully deserved their leveller when it arrived just before the interval.
James Bennett was picked out inside the box and his cross looped up off a defender. Bradshaw rose well at the far post and bundled the ball over the line.
Boro looked to have taken the lead right on the stroke of half-time, but by the time Evans had slotted beyond keeper Adam McHugh, the linesman’s flag had risen to rule it out.
Having almost grabbed the initiative just before the break, they almost conceded it seconds after.
Henderson dragged his shot across the face of goal after Steve Ridley’s poor defensive header and then Michael Roberts drilled just past the post after shaking off his marker.
Roberts made no mistake when he was given a second chance on 55 minutes. Boro missed a header from a long ball and the striker nipped in to finish in style.
Spennymoor continued to press and their efforts bore more fruit.
Weak defending on the right handed Henderson some more space and his composed finish arrowed into the bottom corner to make it 3-1.
Boro almost hit back when Bradshaw cut in and struck the post, Bolder had the goal at his mercy when the rebound fell to his feet, but he scooped over.
There was more pain to follow for Boro though, as another incisive break into the box resulted in Andrew Stephenson poking home, he reeled away from goal to chants of “easy” from the home fans.
Having thrown on Ryan Blott and Sam O’Malley to boost the attacking line, Boro went all out to salvage something from the fixture.
They managed little in the final moments though, apart from the odd raid from Pete Davidson and a scuffed shot that Paul Robson will want to forget.
By this point the game and Boro’s hopes were long gone.