Altrincham have been knocked out of the Cheshire Senior Cup in the preliminary round at the hands of Congleton Town, who picked up a 2-0 win at The J.Davidson Stadium on Tuesday evening.
Goals from Saul Henderson and Daniel Cope in the first half were enough to send the Bears through into the first round of the competition.
With reserve team manager Chris Rowley taking the reigns, a youthful squad was chosen, with first-team squad members Shaun Densmore, Elliot Wynne and Simon Richman also starting. Recent signing Charlie Scott was also named in the starting line-up.
Congleton capitalised on a poor start from the Robins, with Cope releasing a left-footed strike that hit the far post and cannoned back into play before Alty cleared the danger.
Just less than a minute later the away side took the lead through Henderson, who struck the ball past Wynne from inside the penalty area.
With very few openings created by the Robins, it was the away side that looked like scoring a second goal of the game and they almost did via Daniel Cope. The Congleton forward saw Wynne off his line and tried to chip the Alty birthday boy but the audacious attempt went over the bar.
Just six minutes before half-time, Cope added a second for the Bears with an unstoppable left-footed free-kick from about 25-yards out. Wynne had no chance of saving the curling effort which went into the top corner of his goal, which Cope rounded off with an impressive somersault on the half-way line.
Talented youngster Dontai Gabbidon was the most lively Altrincham player and threatened to get one back for the Robins but his various efforts failed to trouble Ellison in the Congleton goal.
There was a brief stoppage in play due to floodlight failure with minutes remaining but that was quickly remedied. The lights did however go out on Alty’s Cheshire Senior Cup campaign as Congleton saw the game out and held on to their two-goal advantage to move into the next round.
The first team regulars return to league action this weekend for a tough assignment on Saturday as they travel to high-flying Chester in the National League North for a 3pm kick off.