Paul Carden’s first home game as manager of Southport ended in a 1-0 defeat to Gateshead in a match where the captain, vice-captain and leading scorer were all absent due to suspension.
New loan signing from Tranmere Rovers George Donnelly added weight to the attack and James Carton – one of two loanees from Shrewsbury – went closest to scoring.
But, ultimately, the Sandgrounders went down to an eighth minute goal by Rob Renshaw.
In the NPL Premier Division, Bamber Bridge moved to within four points of the play-off places after a 3-1 home victory over bottom club Padiham.
Paul McKenna gave Brig a great start with a goal inside the opening three minutes.
But Bobby Langford equalised on 25 minutes, only for Ally Waddecar to restore the home side’s lead five minutes before the break.
In the end, the only goal of the second period came from Andy Bell nine minutes from the end.
Burscough went down 3-2 at home to Scarborough Athletic.
Recent signing Tom Corner gave the visitors a 10th-minute lead that Matty Plummer doubled on the half-hour mark.
Paul Williams pulled the Linnets back into the game six minutes later, only for Jimmy Ghaichem to restore Boro’s two-goal lead less than a minute later.
Nick Ryan reduced the deficit to just one on the hour but Boro held on to take the points.
Lancaster beat second-bottom New Mills 4-0 at the Giant Axe.
Reece Pearce and Aaron Taylor gave the Dolly Blues a great start.
Matty Poole got the third and Taylor completed the scoring.
Kendal Town lost 3-1 at Radcliffe Borough.
Clitheroe drew 1-1 at home to Ossett Albion, Jason Hart on target with a penalty to earn the hosts a point.