Brackley Town’s four-game winning run was ended last night when they were convincingly beaten 3-0 by relegation-threatened Histon.
Having produced a fine display away to second-placed Guiseley at the weekend, Saints went into the game full of confidence but were undone by a penalty and two stunning second half strikes.
It leaves Jon Brady’s side third in the table but only nine points ahead of fourth-placed FC Halifax, who have five games in hand.
The home side started well with Danny Fitzsimons going close with an early drive while Brackley goalkeeper Billy Turley was called into action several times to deny Histon in the opening 10 minutes.
Playing on a difficult pitch, Brackley found it difficult to get going and it came as no surprise when the hosts took a deserved lead in the 37th minute.
The goal came from the penalty spot after Eddie Nisevic fouled the impressive Ben Corker and Jim Stevenson confidently dispatched the spot kick.
Leading at the break, Histon remained in charge throughout the second half before doubling their lead with a sublime long-range volley from Jay Dowie that gave Turley no chance.
Three minutes later the home side added a third to make the game safe and it came thanks to another superb strike, this time Kaine Sheppard with a sumptuous volley.
Things then got worse for Brackley when Turley collided with the post and was stretchered off with substitute goalkeeper Laurie Walker coming off the bench.
There was little action in the remaining minutes, though, as Histon comfortably saw out victory.
Meanwhile, Brady has bolstered his squad for the final 12 games of the season by signing former Aston Villa youngster Ebby Nelson-Addy.
The 20-year-old, who primarily plays as a defensive midfielder, was released by Villa at the end of last season and joins Saints from Midland Alliance side Loughborough University.
Brackley: Turley (L Walker), Clifton, Nisevic, Odhiambo, Sharpe, Austin (Diggin), Story, Solkhon (Robinson), Louis, Sandy, Winters.
Subs not used: Mulligan, Walker.