Stockport County wre unable to build on their fine win at Hyde last time out as they came unstuck in the Blue Square Bet Premier at Cambridge United.
United’s impressive run of form continued with a 4-1 win over County at the R Costings Abbey Stadium.
Liam Hughes gave the hosts the lead on 19 minutes, only for Stockport’s Danny Whitehead to equalise just one minute later.
Josh Coulson restored Cambridge’s advantage with a 42nd-minute goal before Hughes notched his second of the afternoon.
The result was put beyond doubt when Tom Elliott converted from close range to make it 4-1 in the 70th minute.
Hyde FC also failed to chalk up any points, losing 1-0 at Ewen Fields to promotion hopefuls Forest Green Rovers.
James Norwood notched his eleventh strike of the campaign just after half-time to consign the Tigers to their second successive loss.
Blue Square Bet North
Altrincham comfortably defeated Harrogate Town at Moss Lane to feature in the league’s play-off places for the first time this campaign.
Simon Richman had already given Alty the lead when visiting keeper Craig MacGillivray was sent-off for hauling down Damian Reeves.
However, Matt Doughty’s spot-kick was saved by stand-in keeper Adam Nowakowski, who generally plies his trade outfield.
Second-half goals from Carl Rodgers and the prolific Reeves ensured the points belonged to Lee Sinnott’s side.
Stalybridge Celtic dispatched basement side Hinckley United with the goals coming from Mitchell Austin, Jack Laird and second-half substitute Joel Bembo-Leto.
Droylsden lost for the fifth time in a row, comprehensively beaten at the Butcher’s Arms Ground byBrackley Town.
All three goals came in the opening half an hour thanks to a Tom Winters double and a third fromDominica international Jefferson Louis.
Evo-Stik Premier Division and Evo-Stik League Division One (North)
FC United of Manchester blew away the cobwebs of an inactive festive period by storming out the blocks at the Weaver Stadium.
Karl Marginson’s side were two goals to the good after ten minutes against Nantwich Town courtesy of Matthew Wolfenden and Adam Jones strikes before being pegged back in the second-half.
Sean Cooke and Simon Everall restored parity before Greg Daniels won it for the Red Rebels in the final ten minutes.
Ashton United returned to winning ways and collected their first maximum points haul since November after beating Grantham Town at the South Kesteven Sports Stadium.
The game was sewn up by half-time thanks to goals from Matthew Kosylo and Scott Hogan with the Robins firmly ensconced in the chasing pack at the league’s summit.
In Evo-Stik League Division One (North), Trafford won the play-off six-pointer at Church Lane by narrowly defeating New Mills.
Christopher Palmer scored the winner with less than fifteen minutes remaining after Daniel Grimshaw cancelled out pacy winger Shelton Payne’s opener for the visitors just before half-time.
With one league win from their last five outings Mossley were suffering a downturn in form, but the Lilywhites revived their promotion challenge with a home win over Ossett Albion.
Adam Mather scored both goals in a 2-0 win which takes the former New Mills forward’s tally for the season to eight.
After a surge in form during November and December, Curzon Ashton have also stuttered of late but a win over Prescot Cables will bring comfort to manager John Flanagan.
Valerie Park is never an easy place to visit but goals from Kristian Dennis, Matt Purcell and Sam Walker secured three points after Anthony Shinks had equalised for Cables.
The shock of the day came at Shawbridge as three second-half goals secured an impressive win for lowly Radcliffe Borough against fourth-placed Clitheroe.
Boro were awarded two penalties in the space of seven second-half minutes which were duly converted by James Burke and Matt Crooks before the latter completed the rout late on.
In-form Ramsbottom United snatched a late point to maintain their impressive away form at Irongate against Bamber Bridge.
Former Warrington Town winger Owen Roberts had given Neil Crowe’s Brig the lead in the dying embers of the first-half before Rammy equalised with seven minutes remaining.
Player-manager Anthony Johnson was only on the pitch for a matter of minutes before rolling back the years to salvage a useful point for his side.
Salford City came up short against Cammell Laird at the Kirklands Stadium, losing by the odd goal in five.
Lairds twice led through a Jamie Henders penalty and a Joe Holt strike but were pegged back on each occasion by Daniel Heffernan.
However, with two minutes remaining Daniel O’Brien won it for the Birkenhead side.
Image courtesy of Stockport County, via YouTube, with thanks.