Lancaster City’s unbeaten start to the new season ended with defeat at Ashton United on Tuesday night.
Jack Dyche’s first-half opener was cancelled out by Craig Carney midway through the second half only for Matthew Chadwick to restore the hosts’ advantage shortly after.
The Dolly Blues then did everything but score as Phil Brown saw his side lose for the first time in the Evo-Stik Premier Division.
On a wet and windy night at Hurst Cross, the visitors started on the front foot, Ryan Winder’s free-kick easily cleared by the home side before City saw a handful of corners come to nothing.
Ashton started to grow into the game, Liam Tomsett hitting his free-kick just over the crossbar on 23 minutes.
The game sprang into life on the half hour when Preston loanee Melle Meulensteen had the ball in the back of the net only to be adjudged to be in an offside position.
Ashton then hit back with the game’s opening goal, Josh Powell spilling a high ball to the feet of Dyche who had the simple task of putting the hosts in front.
Lancaster were denied a penalty five minutes before the break when Tom Kilifin was brought down in the box with City’s appeals waved away.
The striker had another opening in first-half stoppage time but his effort went over the bar.
The Dolly Blues’ pressure continued after the break. Carney going close almost immediately with a shot that hit the post and rebounded to safety.
Winder’s free-kick was then straight at the grateful David Carnell but Brown’s side didn’t have to wait long for their goal.
Adam Sumner sent in the cross from the left and it was met by the head of Carney who equalised on 68 minutes.
The home side were back in front just two minutes later however, Chadwick’s cross-cum-shot looping across and over Powell as Ashton restored their advantage.
Lancaster then threw everything at the hosts in search of an equaliser.
Sumner fired one effort over the bar and Winder twice agonisingly hit the post as City came up short.
Lancaster City: Powell, Henry, Sumner, Wills, Clark (capt), Steel, S Bailey (Tam 63), Carney, Kilifin (Wood 75) Meulensteen (C Bailey 75), Winder. Subs not used: Dugdale, Hudson