Exeter City suffered a 6-0 defeat at the hands of an unforgiving Ipswich Town side, who sealed promotion to the Championship at Portman Road.
Five first half goals from the inform Tractor Boys had the home side purring before a sixth just after the break had the fans in party mode, with the win confirming their place in the second tier. Goals from Conor Chaplin (2), Massimo Luongo, George Hirst, Nathan Broadhead and Wes Burns secured victory.
Gary Caldwell made three changes to the last outing at Sheffield Wednesday with Pedro Borges making his full league debut, Demetri Mitchell coming back in and Gary Woods back between the sticks. Returning as well, but only to the bench, was Jay Stansfield.
City started the game well, keeping the promotion candidates at bay and had the first chance of the game inside five minutes, but a well worked piece of play from Harry Kite and Josh Coley ended up with Borges strike being deflected away by the home defence.
Moments later and with eight minutes on the clock, the hosts took the lead with their first chance, courtesy of an emphatic long-range strike from Conor Chaplin which rippled the back of the net with force, sending the home crowd into delirium.
City were not lying back and letting Ipswich walk over them and led by an attack of Coley, Key and Mitchell, they were giving the home defence a headache. With Mitchell dictating the play for City they were starting to find some space in between the Ipswich defence and midfield.
But, after a mishap at the back for City, Ipswich were able to double their lead. With a long ball over the top not dealt with, Ipswich number 25 Luongo was baring down on goal and let loose a rocket, leaving Woods no option but to watch it sail into the back of the net.
Ipswich made it 3-0 just after the 20th minute mark, with George Hirst just pipping Wes Burns to the ball on the six-yard line, again leaving Woods completely stranded in the City goal.
It was another in quick succession for the home side as the score reached 4-0 inside 30 minutes. A ball over the top found Burns through on goal and while tracking back Caprice was adjudged to have brough the winger down, and up stepped Nathan Broadhead, who after assisting the third, got his name on the scoresheet.
City's capitualtion continued four minutes later when Ipswich got their fifth of the game - Hartridge and Chauke going for the same header led to the ball falling to Chaplin, who was able to slot the ball away for his second of the game.
A regroup was needed at the break, but just two minutes in, the hosts added their sixth goal of the game. After a quick turn of pace Burns was able to glide past Grounds and sent a chipped effort over the head of Woods and into the back of the net.
There were still signs of life in the Grecians though, with Sweeney picking up the ball, playing the ball into Borges and the youngster sent a lovely ball out to Mitchell. With some lovely skill he twisted his way into the Ipswich penalty area, but Christian Walton was able to smother.
Ipswich almost made it seven as the game was approaching full time, but an excellent block from a combination of Sweeney and Aimson, stopped Chaplin getting his third of the game.
The next match for City is the final game of the season against Morecambe at SJP on Sunday 7th May.
Ipswich: Walton (Hladky), Clarke, Woolfenden, Burgess, Burns (Jackson), Morsy ©, Luongo (Ball), Davis, Chaplin, Broadhead (Edwards), Hirst (Ladapo)
Subs not used: Donacien, Harness,
City: Woods, Caprice, Sweeney, Aimson ©, Hartridge (Grounds), Mitchell (Sparkes), Chauke, Borges (Stansfield), Kite, Key (Cox), Coley (Scott)
Subs not used: Blackman, White
Referee: Scott Oldham
Attendance: 29334 (919 Away)