Hemsworth MW’s warm-up for their big Buildbase FA Vase second round tie did not quite go according to plan as they suffered a home defeat to AFC Mansfield.
Wayne Benn’s men saw their eight-match unbeaten run in all competitions ended as they lost out to opponents one place below them in the Premier Division of the Toolstation NCE League.
Wells went into the game looking to climb into the top six after a string of good results and four clean sheets in their previous five games and they started well with Nick Guest firing narrowly wide following good play by Lee Swift.
Richard Collier saw a header saved in the first five minutes following Adam Wilson’s far post cross, but the visitors weathered the early storm.
Guest sent a header over, but the hosts found themselves one down when Grant Allott struck with a header for Mansfield just after the half-hour mark.
They looked to respond and almost immediately Bill Law found space to get a shot in only for the Mansfield keeper to save.
Into the second half Hemsworth continued to make the running as Collier’s shot from distance was well saved.
They finally scored on 57 minutes when Jack Steers came up from the back to power home a header from a Dom Blair corner.
Mansfield were in no mood to surrender, however, as their defence remained solid for the rest of the game, denying the hosts any more clear chances.
The match looked to be heading for a draw before the visitors came up with a late winner with Oliver Fearon netting two minutes from time.
It turned into a frustrating game for Hemsworth, who remain in eighth position, but they will still travel in good spirits to the north east this Saturday as they hit the Wembley trail once again.
Wells are up against Dunston UTS in a second round FA Vase tie that offers them a chance of making club history as they have never been beyond this stage in the competition.
Manager Benn will be gearing his side up for a tough test with the Gateshead-based team having a good pedigree in knockout football and being former winners of the Vase in 2012.