Alfreton Town’s proud home record was shattered by Chester on Tuesday night by a solitary goal that has seen the Reds slip to tenth spot in the Skrill Premier.
Perhaps more worrying for manager Nicky Law will have been the sight of striker Danny Wishart limping out of the game with a hamstring problem and defender Michael Wylde clutching his shoulder as he left the pitch.
Wishart resumed his partnership up front with Job Ayo Akinde, having replaced Paul Clayton against Forest Green Rovers on Saturday, and when he pulled up injured just nine minutes into the second half younger brother Sammy joined Akinde up front.
The first-ever meeting between the two teams saw Chester on the defensive early on with two goal-line clearances necessary in the opening four minutes, John McGrath’s inswinging corner spotted late in flight by keeper John Danby, then Wishart’s drive hacked clear by Michael Kay after a darting run.
Horan hastily conceded a corner when Tom Shaw’s cross threatened to leave Wishart with a simple conversion in the 31st minute, then two minutes later Chester struck the killer blow that was to take the points.
Lewis Turner’s cross from the right was met at close range with a firm header from Reed and despite Rowe-Turner’s best efforts on the line the defender could only help the ball into the net.
A low drive from Akinde from the edge of the area was held by Danby as the interval beckoned, then a Dan Bradley thunderbolt was parried before the busy Horan blocked Akinde’s follow-up.
Alfreton were on the back foot for most of the second half, mainly having to deal with corners and free-kicks which featured deliveries into the goalmouth from McIntyre.