STEVE Housham insists his Trinity side will bounce back after a last-gasp FC Halifax winner saw Gainsborough slip out of the play-off places for the first time since August.
A 90th minute header from James Dean settled this fiercely contested encounter.
Well over a thousand crammed into the Northolme for the Boxing Day fixture.
The result means the Shaymen leapfrog their opponents into the final play-off spot in Blue Square Bet North while Trinity fall to 7th.
However, Housham’s men get a chance for revenge on New Year’s Day when they travel to The Shay.
Housham said: “We’ll get down to the training ground, we’ll work hard again and get ready for New Year’s Day.”
“It was a good performance today, we worked hard but we lacked that little bit of quality.”
“I’m really disappointed with the way it ended but we showed character even after that. Their keeper’s pulled off a great save from Mettam but we had chances to win the game and it’s just one of them days.”
Housham started with Darryn Stamp and Paul Connor up front in an attempt to exploit FC Halifax’s uncertainty at set-pieces but the game only started to open up when Leon Mettam came on.
And Housham admitted Mettam’s pace gave his side a different outlet.
“He’s got pace and Stampy ( Stamp) and Cons (Connor) probably haven’t got that but for the job I wanted them to do they did well today,” he added.
“I was disappointed with our set-pieces first half because I knew they were fairly weak and we didn’t get at them enough.”
“We’re out of them play-offs but there’s 60 points still to play for and we want to get as many as we can.We’ll bounce back.”
Neither side were able to impose themselves in the opening 15 minutes, referee Darren England by far the busiest man on the field, booking players on both sides.
But Trinity did have the ball in the net just before the half hour when Connor glanced in Ryan Williams’s stab at goal although the linesman’s flag ruled it out.
On the stroke of half-time, Jamie Yates spurned the best chance of the game with a curling effort that flew just wide of Simon Eastwood’s post.
Ten minutes into the restart Liam Hogan saw a long range effort expertly tipped over by home custodian Kenny Arthur.
Gainsborough were largely restricted to shots from distance but Stamp almost found the net with one which Eastwood palmed to safety.
Halifax’s Dean sent an effort wide and at the other end Eastwood produced another fine save to deny Lee Ridley.
On 72 minutes, James Walshaw found himself in the box but skewed horribly wide as both sides upped the ante.
Connor drilled a strike over Eastwood’s crossbar and Shane Clarke wasted a golden chance moments later dragging a shot past the far post.
The Shaymen went just as close with seven minutes remaining. This time sub Jason St Juste rolled an effort inches wide and Tom Baker was next to be foiled by the reflexes of Arthur.
But the visitors finally broke Gainsborough’s stubborn resolve in the 90th minute with Dean powering home Baker’s left-wing cross from inside the six-yard box to ensure all three points would be returning to west Yorkshire.
Mettam still had two chances to level proceedings after that but the excellent Eastwood was equal to both efforts and Halifax hung on.
Gainsborough Trinity: Arthur; Roma, Sandwith, Cowan, Waterfall, Clarke, D’Laryea, R. Williams (Ridley 58), Stamp (Mettam 64), Connor, Yates. Unused Subs: Boyce; Leary, J. Williams.
FC Halifax Town: Eastwood; Ashworth, McManus, Needham, Hogan, Lowe, Garner (Hardy 90), Baker, Dean, Rainford (Gregory 71), Walshaw (St Juste 81). Unused Subs: Senior; Holland.
Goals: Dean 90.
Referee: Darren England
Assistants: Adam Burgess, David Hunt.