Lancaster City’s unbeaten league run that stretched back to November was ended at the hands of play-off rivals Glossop North End as three second-half goals ensured a long journey home for the Dolly Blues.
Sleet and a bitter gale meant both sides took a while to get going, the visitors shooting with the wind in the first half.
It was however North End that made the more promising start, Tom Bailey and Eddie Moran both blazing over from good positions in the box.
The first time City threatened was from a corner that reached the far post and Zach Clark’s volley on the turn was cleared off the line amid a reasonable handball shout.
Their best opportunity came moments before the interval as Craig Carney floated to the far post only for Clark to head just wide.
Glossop came out the stronger side in the second period, Jamie Rainford lobbed over the bar from the edge of the area when he should have done better.
At the other end Jacob Davis struck over from distance, that being Lancaster’s last meaningful attempt before the deadlock was broken.
Good build-up play resulted in the ball finding its way out to Bailey on the right, his cross was held up in the air and dropped to Astley Mulholland who made no mistake with his header.
There was a hint of fortune for Glossop’s second as Rainford squared for Mulholland who mishit straight into Bailey’s path and the latter drove through Mike Hale.
Rainford was then denied a fantastic second when Hale tipped his curling effort round the post and Dave Young headed over from a corner.
The hosts showed their quality with the third goal, Bailey nodded down a diagonal ball and Kelvin Lugsden bundled home to seal the win.
Lancaster kept going forward however with Danny Carlton returning from injury and Aaron Taylor back in the City ranks too.
It was Ryan Winder who was once again the architect of Lancaster’s goal, beating a man in the middle of the park and playing in Carlton with a reverse ball, the latter dispatching into the top corner for his fourth of the season.
It was too little too late for the Dolly Blues who must now host high flyers Northwich on Saturday in what promises to be a gripping affair.
Lancaster City: Hale, Henry, Clark, Davis, Marshall, Mercer, Winder, Akrigg (Shearwood), Clark (Taylor), Carney, Cummings (Carlton).