Melton Town’s made an unhappy return to action after a string of postponements as they went down to fellow strugglers Long Buckby at home on Saturday.
This was a game between two pretty poor sides struggling to avoid relegation from the United Counties League, but the visitors showed the greater fight and eased home despite playing with 10 men for almost an hour.
Buckby’s first attack saw Scott Sandy clean through and lobbing Green, but Hollis recovered well enough to head the ball off the line.
And Melton hit the front when Hendey played Vernon through who cut in from the wing and slotted a superb strike into the bottom-left corner of the net.
The home side were on the front foot and should have made it 2-0 when Lapworth floated a great cross towards the back post which found Vernon just three yards out.
But the Melton forward got the ball stuck under his foot and the chance went begging.
The visitors then took control and did not let go. Tom Mellor’s great run down the left and low cross found Simon Barby unmarked in the six-yard box, but he shot straight at Green.
Then midway through the first half Buckby were level when a hopeful cross into the box by Yeates caused chaos as Melton failed to clear.
The ball fell loose for Sandy to knock it into an open net from close in.
Minutes later poor marking from Jason Lee’s throw-in allowed Mohamib to head in from two yards.
From the very next attack Buckby were only denied a third by Green’s great double save, with Melton in disarray and arguing among themselves.
But Buckby then conceived to hand the initiative back to Melton when Zak Ginvert was clean through one-on-one with keeper Jordan May.
He took the ball past him with the goal begging, but was pulled down. As the referee awarded a free-kick. May then pushed Ginvert back to the ground, giving the ref no choice but to show him a red card.
Yet Buckby’s 10 men still controlled the game, and having re-organised at the break, came out for the second half with confidence and raced into a three-goal lead.
Lee’s hopeful clearance caught Melton’s defence asleep and Tom Mellor lobbed the hesitant Green.
A kick downfield from Buckby’s stand-ion keeper again caught Town’s defence napping for Mellor to slot his second past Green.
Melton pulled one back with 10 minutes left from a goalmouth scramble when the ball fell to Ginvert who tapped in at the second attempt after his initial shot hit the keeper.
This was easily the worst performance of the season, in a run of one win in their last seven, and leaves Town 16th and seven points above third-bottom Bugbrooke.
Town host Harrowby on Tuesday at Digital Deadline Park (kick-off 7.45pm); the last time the sides met for the reverse fixture, Town had travelled to Grantham, knowing a win would have sent them top of Division One.