Colne crashed to their third defeat in a row at Congleton on Saturday as once again they lacked fire power up front in a 3-1 loss.
Eddie Stanford and Ashley Carter provided some good crosses into the danger area from the left wing but some uncompromising challenges by the home defence went unpunished by the referee.
Although the game was end-to-end, Congleton began to look the more dangerous and forced a series of corners on the half hour when the Reds rearguard had to keep out three close range shots in succession.
Colne still pushed forward and Stanford’s free kick was deflected for a corner,before Carter’s cross went begging across the Bears goalmouth.
With half-time approaching, Congleton’s outstanding striker Michael Koral produced a moment of magic with a turn just inside the area and a shot that curled just inside the far post past the despairing dive of Chris Thompson to give the home side the lead.
Nigel Coates’ half-time team talk could not have taken into account the events of the first minute of the second half when Scott Sephton fired a 20-yard shot that struck the inside of the left hand post before nestling in the far corner of the goal to give the Reds a mountain to climb.
Substitutes Mickey Saunders and Michael Cruz were introduced on the hour but almost immediately Congleton scored their third goal when Sephton crashed a shot against the Colne crossbar and Andrew Brown headed home the rebound.
Colne got their reward after 87 minutes when Carter beat the keeper with a cool finish from Saunders’ pass.
Colne travel to Liversedge tomorrow in the second qualifying round of the FA Vase – kick-off 3 p.m.