Exeter City fell to a 2-1 defeat at home to Grimsby Town in Sky Bet League Two.
The Grecians dominated much of the match with having no less than 30 shots, whilst Town defended bravely with key clearances off the line and some excellent saves from James McKeown.
Martyn Woolford got the game's first goal when he popped up at the back post to fire in after 14 minutes before the Grecians levelled through Jayden Stockley in the second half.
But just moments later, substitute Mitch Rose converted from the penalty spot after Ahkeem Rose had been brought down by Dara O'Shea.
Manager Matt Taylor made four changes to the side that started the 2-1 win over Yeovil Town on Boxing Day with Jordan Tillson, Tristan Abrahams and Chiedozie Ogbene all coming into the side alongside Alex Hartridge, who made his first start for the club.
The Grecians got off to a positive start with chances falling in the opening three minutes. After a corner was cleared to Jake Taylor, his shot was blocked into the path of Stockley and his effort was saved low by James McKeown who could only parry into his area, and the ball fell kindly for the City striker again, but McKeown saved well for the second time.
But it was the away side would find the net first, on 14 minutes, when a deep cross was first headed away by O’Shea, but Woolford was on hand to volley in at the far post to give Grimsby the advantage.
Despite falling behind against the run of play, the Grecians continued to push forward. They had the ball in the net through Jayden Stockley, but for the offside flag, and Tristan Abrahams saw his speculative effort edge just wide of goal.
The Grecians thought they’d levelled just after the half hour mark when Ogbene’s effort edged wide before Tristan Abrahams popped up to tap the ball home. After deliberation the officials then ruled that the striker was offside prior to tapping home.
City got closer to an equaliser again when an Archie Collins corner floated to the far post for Pierce Sweeney to volley well towards the top corner but for a goal line clearance from Alex Whitmore.
Abrahams was next to test McKeown as Dean Moxey’s cross was nodded on well by Stockley, but the on-loan striker’s header was clawed away from danger by the Town keeper as City went into the break behind.
The second half was just five minutes old when Grimsby were reduced to 10-men when Alex Whitmore slid in dangerously on Jake Taylor leaving referee Chris Sarginson with little option but to reach for the red card.
The Grecians continued to dominate possession and chances, and they had two good opportunities when the ball first fell to Sweeney, but his effort was well blocked for a corner. The resulting set piece found the head of Stockley, but he was unable to keep his header on target.
City final got their equaliser on 78 minutes when persistent play saw them cross from the left before Stockley guided his header into the far corner.
But they were level for just a couple of minutes as Grimsby were awarded a penalty after O’Shea brought down Ahkeem Rose, which Mitch Rose then converted.
It was almost 2-2 when Nicky Law crossed low for Sweeney to flick towards goal but for another remarkable save from McKeown who tipped it round the post.
More goal line clearances would follow from the away side in a crowded box when the ball found Taylor at the far post, but his powerful drive was blocked well.
Stockley would then hit the crossbar from close range on 90 minutes from Sweeney’s wicked delivery but the Grecians couldn’t find that all-important goal to take even a point from the game after a dominant display.
Exeter City: Pym, Sweeney, O’Shea, Tillson (Law, 53), Stockley, Abrahams (Forte, 64), Moxey, Ogbene, Taylor, Collins, Hartridge (L. Martin, 90+1)
Subs not used: Hamon, Woodman, A. Martin, Oates
Grimsby Town: McKeown, Hall-Johnson, Hessenthaler (M. Rose, 80), Clifton, Woolford (Pollock, 52), Cardwell, Fox, Embleton, Whitmore, Hendrie, Thomas (A. Rose, 75)
Subs not used: Russell, Welsh, Buckley, Pringle
Booked: Woolford, Hendrie
Sent off: Alex Whitmore
Attendance: 4,956 (Inc, 253, away)