Nelson fell to a derby defeat down the M65 at AFC Darwen on Saturday.
The hosts ground out a win against Andy Harrison’s side, with goals from Leon Creech in each half.
Jake Lloyd pulled one back with half an hour to go, and the Admirals pressed hard for a leveller, but Darwen held on for the points at the Anchor Ground.
The first chance fell to Nelson after two minutes.
A free kick into the Darwen box saw a Taranjeet Jheeta shot trickle just wide of the post.
The home side took the lead in the seventh minute as Creech curled a corner into the area, which flew over the head of keeper Marcel Wusiewicz to nestle in the opposite end of the goal.
Two minutes later came a golden opportunity to double the lead when Elliot Pond was put in the clear, but hooked the ball the wrong side of the post with the keeper stranded.
Danny Taylor was on target after 19 minutes but Wusiewicz made a good stop.
Very little then happened, until with five minutes to go a Nelson defender dithered in his area, and Creech pressured him to get control of the ball, with the Darwen man slotting home for his second goal.
The second half was uneventful until the hour mark, then a long throw in from Ash Brierley caused problems in the Darwen box.
The ball was only cleared to Lloyd just inside the area, who returned a low drive into the back of the net to renew Nelson’s hopes of getting something from the game.
The visitors had the better of the remaining game and put some pressure on the Darwen defence without really creating anything worthwhile, as they slipped to defeat.
Nelson host Prestwich Heys tomorrow, kick-off 3 p.m., before Carlisle City make the trip to Little Wembley on Tuesday night, 7-45 p.m.