Paul Mullin’s 85th minute strike wasn’t enough for Tranmere Rovers as they lost 3-1 at Forest Green Rovers.
The striker came off the bench to put Rovers back in the game after trailing 2-0 at half time, but pushing forward for an equaliser, the hosts sealed the points in stoppage time courtesy of Tahvon Campbell.
Manager Micky Mellon made one change from the 0-0 draw at Yeovil Town, Jay Harris replacing the suspended Ollie Banks in the heart of the TRFC midfield.
The hosts started the stronger of the two sides and went ahead in the 11th minute after Reece Brown picked up the ball inside his own half after a flick on before racing in on goal and slotting past Scott Davies.
Tranmere nearly responded instantly when James Norwood collected a great long-range pass from Luke McCullough to get in behind the Forest Green defence, but his low effort was saved well by James Montgomery.
Just before the 20 minute mark, both Forest Green and Tranmere had opportunities to find the all important second goal. First, the hosts hit the crossbar courtesy of a free-kick from Dayle Grubb from 25-yards. From the free-kick, Tranmere went on the counter attack as Norwood was once again denied by Montgomery.
Two minutes later, Rovers nearly turned home a goalmouth scramble with Manny Monthe coming the closest to getting his boot to the ball.
TRFC started working their way back into the game but were dealt a second blow with less than ten minutes before the half-time whistle.
The visitors conceded a penalty when skipper Steve McNulty fouled Tahvon Campbell. Gavin Gunning’s penalty was excellently saved by Davies but Liam Shephard was on hand to turn home the rebound.
Ten minutes into the second half, Larnell Cole was introduced for Jonny Smith as Mellon went in search for a way back into the game. The substitute nearly made the perfect impact, getting on the end of Jennings’ cross, but his effort was well wide of the mark.
On the hour mark, Davies pulled off an important save to deny Campbell from inside the penalty box.
At the other end, Harris came within an inch of scoring his first league goal of the campaign. Linking up well with Norwood, the midfielder found space in front of goal but Montgomery pulled off a fine stop.
The second Tranmere change came in the 64th minute, Mullin switching with wide man Connor Jennings.
Campbell was proving to be Forest Green’s dangerman, but Davies again was equal to his effort, a curling shot from 20-yards palmed away by the former Fleetwood Town goalkeeper.
The final change for TRFC saw Ben Tollitt come on for Harvey Gilmour with ten minutes to play.
The winger looked lively, but it was fellow sub Mullin who had the next chance for Rovers, slamming a 30-yard strike wide of the right-hand post.
With five minutes to go, Mullin grabbed a goal back for Tranmere Rovers, slotting home from inside the penalty area to set up a frantic end to the game.
With Tranmere pushing for an equaliser, Forest Green hit Tranmere with a stoppage time goal to seal the points, Campbell the man with the goal.
TRFC will now move on to this weekend’s home encounter against Crawley Town in League Two.
Davies, Caprice, Sutton, McNulty, Monthe, Smith (Cole 54), McCullough, Harris, Gilmour (Tollitt 79), Jennings (Mullin 64), Norwood. Unused subs: George, Mottley-Henry, Ellis, Williams.