The Iron suffered defeat against Carlisle United, following substitute Ryan Loft’s low, second-half strike.
The first chance of the game fell to the Iron in the seventh minute. Looking to make a positive start, Regan Slater delivered a free kick from near the corner flag, in the direction of Andy Butler. The captain headed back across the face of goal towards Yann Songo’o, but his header was cleared off the line.
Two minutes later, the Iron came forward again through Matthew Lund, but the central midfielder couldn’t keep his strike down, and the ball soared over the crossbar.
In the 13th minute, Jordan Clarke sent a right-wing cross to the back post, where Eisa was well-placed to head narrowly over the bar, with United pressing for the opener.
Just three minutes later, they nearly grabbed that elusive goal, this time through George Miller who glanced just wide courtesy of a Matthew Lund delivery.
In the 21st minute, Slater stood over another set piece, this time from the left side. He floated a ball to the back post for Butler, but the big centre back couldn’t divert his header on target.
Ten minutes later, Gilliead and Miller linked up well down the right side, before the former sent in a teasing cross to the back post for Slater, who met it with a diving header that flew inches past the post.
38 minutes in, it was a similar story as Butler met another Slater delivery, but home goalkeeper Adam Collin gathered the ball down low.
On the stroke of half time, Miller was held down to the floor by Byron Webster, but the referee waved away the claims for a penalty. Abo Eisa picked up the loose ball only to see his shot deflected over the bar for a corner, which the away side cleared.
The Cumbrian’s made a half time substitution (Ryan Loft replacing Elias Sorensen) in an attempt to change the tide of the game, but it was the Iron who re-emerged on top after the break with a series of corners and sustained pressure.
In the 54th minute, Miller almost capitalised on a short back pass from Jack Iredale, the former charged down the keeper, but luckily for the away side, the ball bobbled away from danger.
Four minutes later, it was Rory McArdle on the end of Slater’s corner, but the centre-back couldn’t keep his header down.
Despite all the Iron’s pressure, it was Carlisle that broke the deadlock on the hour mark. The ball fell to Ryan Loft who drove towards goal, and rifled home at the near post. Appeals for a foul in the build-up were dismissed by referee Sam Purkiss.
Eight minutes later, the Iron felt hard-done-by again courtesy of the referee. This time, Gilliead looked to beat his man inside the away side’s box and was caught by Iredale, but the claims were again waved away.
Moments later, Abo Eisa’s strike was deflected behind for a corner and cleared. Carlisle countered and came close to extending their lead after a marauding run from Harry McKirdy, the forward played a one-two with Sagaf, but Watson was quick off his line to avert the danger.
In the 76th minute, the Iron took a corner from the left following good work from debutant Junior Brown, the ball fell to the edge of the box and Colclough looked to have been pushed, but play continued. Shortly after, Colclough checked inside onto his left from the right wing, and fired a low strike that was held well by Collin.
Six minutes later, the Iron came very close to an equaliser. Slater stood over the corner again, and his inch perfect delivery was met by the head of Lund, forcing a sublime, acrobatic save out of Collin.
The Iron applied the pressure in added time, with McArdle joining the attack and heading down for Eisa who couldn’t quite meet the ball, goalkeeper Adam Collin gathered. Moments later, Eisa curled a free kick towards the head of Colclough, but the latter couldn’t direct his header on target.
IRON: Watson, Clarke, Lund, Songo’o, Butler (McGahey 63’), Gilliead (Colclough 73’), McArdle, Slater (McAtee 85’), Brown, Miller, Eisa.
IRON UNUSED SUBS: Eastwood, van Veen, O’Malley, McAtee, Dawson.
CARLISLE: Collin, Elliott, Iredale, Carroll (Sagaf 56’), Thomas, Jones, McKirdy (Hope 79’), Webster, Bridge, Knight-Percival, Sorensen (Loft 45’).
CARLISLE UNUSED SUBS: Gray, Mellish, Charters, Branthwaite.