Mansfield Town endured a miserable afternoon as they lost 4-1 at home to 10-man York City.
A brace from Shaq Coulthirst and headed goals from Keith Lowe and Jake Hyde were enough to see the visitors take all three points from One Call Stadium despite Matt Rhead pulling one back for the Stags to offer them a way back into the game at 3-1.
Stags’ boss Adam Murray made three changes to the line-up that started the 1-0 defeat to Hartlepool United last Saturday, with Ryan Tafazolli, Rakish Bingham and Vadaine Oliver all earning a spot in the eleven.
The Stags started the game kicking towards the visiting fans in the North Stand and it was those fans who would have been happier with their team's start.
It took just two minutes for York to create the first chance of the game. Brad Halliday delivered a cross from the right-hand side finding Jake Hyde whose shot was tipped away brilliantly by Lenny Pidgeley.
York left back Josh Carson hit a thunderous 25-yard shot which forced the outstanding Pidgeley into yet another heroic save to keep the Minstermen at bay, but the Stags’ keeper couldn’t stop York from taking the lead from the resulting corner though, when Keith Lowe headed home from close-range from Carson’s delivery.
Mansfield had to wait until the 11th minute for their first opportunity of the match when Vadaine Oliver slipped and scuffed his shot straight at York keeper Bobby Olejnik.
A mix up in the Mansfield defence nearly helped York to double their lead when Martin Riley’s back pass was too short for Pidgeley, who did his best to hold up the York break before Riley got back to clear up the danger.
However, York did indeed double their advantage minutes later when, despite looking offside, Coulthirst was played down the right and a mazy run by the striker resulted in him cutting inside and placing the ball into the bottom right-hand corner of Pidgeley’s net.
Mansfield looked for the perfect response and nearly found it in the 18th minute when the lively Rakish Bingham thundered the bar after a perfect knock down by Oliver.
Murray made his first change in the 23rd minute when a tactical change saw centre-back Martin Riley replaced by on loan winger Terry Hawkridge.
The Stags’ increased attacking intent was nearly rewarded when Billy Kee found himself free in the area but fired just over the bar after a brilliant knock down by Oliver.
Murray’s men then looked to have been gifted a chance to get back into the game when York were reduced to 10 men after the half-hour, when 'keeper Bobby Olejnik handled outside of his area after Bingham attempted to chip him from 30 yards.
Mansfield’s old play-off foe, Michael Ingham came on with captain Russ Penn being withdrawn and the experienced Keith Lowe taking on the captain’s armband. Chris Clements then hammered the resulting free-kick defected away for a goal-kick.
That seemed to galvanise the Stags’ and they nearly pulled one back when Michael Raynes won the header inside the box but couldn’t quite scramble the ball home.
Four minutes into the seven minutes of added time, Kee’s shot was blocked before Bingham found the side netting with the follow-up.
The Stags did have the ball in the net in the 49th minute but Vadaine Oliver was adjudged to have pushed the York defender in the back.
Mansfield’s second change of the afternoon came in the 52nd minute as Rhead replaced Kee.
No sooner had the Stags made that substitution, York grabbed their third goal of the game when a corner from the right was headed home by Jake Hyde from close-range in a near-repeat of the first goal.
Mansfield didn’t give up though and Clements fired a left-footed shot past the post after good build-up with Lee Beevers. Moments later, sub Hawkridge saw his shot from the edge of the area hit Oliver and bounce away to safety.
That man Oliver was involved again in the 66th minute when Callum Elder’s brilliant delivery from the left-hand side just evaded the on-rushing striker. A move that proved to be Oliver’s last involvement in the game as Alex Fisher came on to replace the striker.
The visitors made their first change in the 73rd minute when goal scorer Hyde was replaced by Josh O’Hanlon.
Rhead pulled one back with a thumping, controlled shot that left Ingham nowhere near it, but ultimately it proved to be not enough to prevent the Stags’ from falling to defeat against their relegation rivals when Coulthirst nipped in behind the Stags’ defence to score his teams’ fourth near the end.
Attendance: 3,133 (565 away supporters).