Seventy places separate Gainsborough Trinity and Shrewsbury Town in the football pyramid but just a single goal would do so at the Northolme on Sunday.
Trinity, in their first appearance at this stage since 2007, gave as good as they got for much of the encounter, particularly in the first-half, but would be left to rue a couple of good missed chances that could have earned them at least a replay had they gone in.
In the end it was League One Shrewsbury who would prevail, a much stronger final 25 minutes proving the difference as they scored their winner and could well have added to their tally.
But Trinity could hold their heads high and will no doubt take the positives from this performance to inject some confidence into their inconsistent league displays.
Junior Brown was the first to threaten for the visitors. A Matt Sadler cross wasn’t dealt with by the Trinity defence and eventually Brown curled over from the edge of the penalty area.
Abu Ogogo was even closer on five minutes, his header from a right-wing corner inches too high with Jan Budtz’s beaten.
Trinity had been patient early on but their first good chance came 15 minutes in when Ian Black was caught in possession by Simon Russell who in turn fed Marc Newsham, his shot from an angle arrowed just over the top.
Nathan Jarman was then nearly on the scoresheet as from a Steve Brogan corner, his flick at the near post found the roof of the net.
Trinity were starting to give as good as they got and Jon D’Laryea had a low shot blocked on 25 minutes, shortly before Agogo’s side-footed effort found the hands of Budtz at the other end.
Gainsborough had endured a couple of jittery moments at the back and when Russell missed a tackle, Jordan Clark stepped in to drive towards goal but shot too high when in space on the edge of the penalty area.
The closest anyone would come to a first-half goal would be with virtually the last touch of it. Debutant Adam Drury did well down the right and his cross found Newsham whose flicked header glanced off the far post and Shrewsbury cleared to the sound of the half-time whistle.
Shrews striker James Collins had been quiet in the first-half but nearly opened the scoring early in the second, firing Clark’s pull back just wide of the far post.
Trinity then forced Swiss keeper Jason Leutwiler into his first key save, Jarman’s shot deflected up and nearly over the Town stopper but he pushed the ball away from goal, fouled by Newsham in the process.
The opening goal finally arrived on 71 minutes and it came after a good spell of possession from the visitors. The ball was moved around midfield before eventually finding Collins in a lot of space 25 yards out and his low left-foot shot beat the outstretched Budtz and found the corner of the net.
Trinity responded with Brogan breaking into the box and seeing his low shot blocked by Leutwiler, his opposite number Budtz then pulling off a fine stop to deny Scott Vernon at the other end.
Sub Liam McAlinden also forced Budtz into a parry as Shrewsbury continued to look more likely to score again, while fellow sub Shaun Whalley, impressive throughout the second-half, then struck the bar after beating his man on the edge of the penalty area.
As at the end of the first-half, Trinity’s best chance to score would come in the dying seconds. Brogan received the ball on the edge of the penalty area and burst forwards, but his left foot shot would be wide of the target and Trinity’s chance of earning a replay was gone.
Gainsborough: 1 Jan Budtz, 2 Dominic Roma (c), 3 Josh Lacey, 4 Charlie Binns (Nick Bignall 76), 5 Jon D’Laryea, 6 Jake Picton, 7 Simon Russell, 8 Stephen Brogan, 9 Marc Newsham (Darryn Stamp 82), 10 Nathan Jarman, 11 Adam Drury (Jamie Yates 82)
Subs not used: Liam Davis, Cameron Rigby, Lewis Bemrose, Jonathan Hedge
Shrewsbury: 1 Jason Leutwiler, 3 Matt Sadler, 4 Zak Whitbread, 6 Ian Black, 9 James Collins, 12 Junior Brown (Shaun Whalley 46), 13 Anthony Gerrard, 17 Abu Ogogo, 22 Jordan Clark (Scott Vernon 62), 29 Larnell Cole (Liam McAlinden 73), 31 Dominic Smith
Subs not used: Liam Lawrence, Tyrone Barnett, Sam Patterson, Shaun Rowley (GK)
Ref: Darren Bond