Lincoln City were finally beaten for the first time this season as they fell to a surprise defeat to Crawley Town on Saturday.
Michael Bostwick’s own goal was the only game of a tie which will infuriate those who support Lincoln.
The game’s first chance fell to the returning soldier. It seemed harder for Ollie Palmer to miss on his return to Sincil Bank, but instead he ended up in the back of the net instead of the ball.
The visitors began to pressure the Imps defence with an fierce strike from Pantuche Camara was expertly saved from Grant Smith.
Bruno Andrade introduced himself to the Crawley defence towards the end of the half when his mazy run ended in a shooting opportunity. His effort could only find the side netting.
It appeared that it would be level going into the interval but a contentious refereeing decision lead to Crawley taking the lead.
An apparent elbow struck the face of Andrade with the winger going down holding his face. It appeared a clear foul but a glance from both the referee and the linesman showed no indication of a foul being given the Imps way.
The ball was swung in which hit Bostwick and flied into the top corner and gave the visitors the lead.
Another questionable decision came just nine minutes into the second half. A heavy touch from Frecklington saw him go to block a clearance but appeared to catch the Crawley defender.
It appeared that the reaction of the Crawley players helped make up the referee’s mind and a straight red followed for the Lincoln skipper.
The Imps then started to play the brand of football that had seen them propel themselves to the top of Sky Bet League Two.
But it would take until injury time for them to fashion an opportunity. Akinde’s superb knock down found substitute Bernard Mensah who looked as if he was going to slot it into the corner. However, his effort was fired wide.
A training ground free kick saw Shay McCartan receive the ball but his effort was tame and fell into the gloves of the Crawley stopper.