Tranmere Rovers exited the Cheshire Senior Cup on Tuesday night after a 3-1 defeat to the hands of Stockport Town.
It was the home side who began the strongest with a whipped in free kick from the left being safely gathered by Passant in the Rovers goal.
Tranmere’s first chance of the game arrived via Franklyn Akammadu. The striker showed pace and power to race through on goal and seemed to be brought down unfairly but the ref waved play on.
Shortly after, the lively Callum Dolan for Stockport showed quick footwork to create the space for a shooting opportunity and fired a low effort just wide of the post from 20 yards.
Akammadu was once again the danger man for Rovers as he danced between two defenders in the box before being denied at the near post by Stinca in the Stockport goal.
Th deadlock was broken on the 20th minute mark. An in swinging corner was met by the head of defender Kieran O’Connell who placed a firm head into the bottom right corner beyond Passant to give Town the lead.
Stockport continued to put pressure on the Tranmere goal as they searched for a second. Dolan again trying his luck from distance but he failed to trouble passant with his curling shot from 25 yards.
The next chance fell Tranmere’s way just five minutes before the interval. Hayde advanced from right back and curled a brilliant cross to Akammudu who glanced his header inches wide of the post on the stretch.
The second half nearly began in unbelievable circumstances. Akammadu audaciously had a shot straight from kick off which forced Stinca to scramble back and tip over his bar.
On the 54th minute, Rovers were level. A searching ball over the top by Devine was guided past his own keeper boy Greenfield following close pressure by Akammadu to even the score line.
Stockport nearly had an instant reply when Gavin Salmon rose like a salmon to meet a corner from the left. His powerful header was cleared off the line by Kyle Hayde.
The home side once again went close to restoring their lead. Dolan’s ferocious free kick from 20 yards whistled past Passant’s right hand post, much to the relief of the Rovers stopper.
Town’s pressure eventually paid off after a dangerous ball was flashed across the face of the Tranmere goal and Dolan was on hand to tap in at the back post to put Stockport back in the driving seat.
They were nearly out of sight just moments later as Foley cut inside onto his right foot and caught Passant out at his near post. His shot rebounded off the post and away from danger.
Five minutes from time, Stockport put the game to bed. Dolan, who had been a thorn in the Rovers defence all night, danced past his marker and cut the ball back to Salmon who powered the ball home from 10 yards.
Corness came close to a consolation goal for Tranmere after he struck the bar by lobbing the keeper from the edge of the box but it wasn’t to be for Rovers who were knocked out of the Cheshire Senior Cup.
Tranmere Team: Passant, Hayde, Sinnott, Roberts, Long, Spellman, Kerr (Corness), Devine, Walker-Rice (Burton), Akammadu, Nugent