Scarborough Athletic slumped to a 3-0 defeat on the road at Clitheroe on Tuesday night.
Steve Kittrick’s side were second best for much of the game as they were overrun by the pace and energy of the home side.
Despite the return of Dean Lisles and Dave Merris to the Boro line-up, there were warning signs of the attacking threat from the Blues early on as Oliver Stirzaker clipped the Boro crossbar with a powerful header at the back post.
Clitheroe striker Alex Newby then hit the foot of the post with a low curling shot from the edge of the area as the home side started the game brightly.
It was no surprise when Athletic fell behind just before half-time as a swift counter attack caught out the Boro defence.
Blues striker Karl Willoughby was left with time and space to run in from the left flank to slide the ball under Jordan Porter for the opener.
Boro began the second half with more purpose and a higher tempo, but struggled to really test home keeper Chris Thompson.
Clitheroe continued to remain a threat through the speedy Oliver Tuanzebe and the lead was doubled with twenty minutes to go as a cross from Michael Hampson was headed in to his own net at the near post by Boro skipper Joe Lamplough.
A third goal quickly followed as Porter mistimed a punch away from another Hampson cross, with the ball looping up for Willoughby to steer in on the line for his second goal of the game.
There was no way back after this as Boro finished second best to a youthful but hardworking Clitheroe side that did not let the visitors settle and were a constant threat in the final third.
DON'T MISS: Our new look Boro spotlight in this week's Scarborough News - Out Thursday!