Congleton Town 3 Squires Gate 2
Gate's six-match unbeaten start to the season came to an end, though they led at half-time in this Hallmark Security League clash.
Gate were missing four players, so handed a debut to Andy Speight in goal and a first league start for Ryan Tanser.
They had the worst of starts, conceding after only three minutes as James Kirby was given too much space and curled his shot past Speight.
It could have been two had not Gate captain Andy Richards cleared off his line, the resulting corner being headed wide.
Gate had their first opening on six minutes, but Anthony Stayte’s touch was too heavy for top scorer Ric Seear.
The visitors were back in the game on 19 minutes, when Joe Noblet’s corner bounced off the crossbar for Seear to bundle the ball home.
Two minutes later they were ahead, Tanser driving into the box down the right and firing low into the bottom corner.
Gate held their lead until half-time but the hosts were level within a minute of the restart through Nathan Haynes.
Twice within a minute Tanser could have restored Gate’s lead, first firing over from 12 yards following Seear’s cutback, then bursting clear of the defence only for the keeper to save with his feet.
Gate went close again just past the hour, when Noblet’s shot from the edge of the box was tipped over, then the resulting corner fell to Alex McKendrick but he couldn’t get his shot away.
They were made to pay when Congleton scored the winner on 72 minutes through unmarked striker Declan Fletcher at the back post.
Gate aim to bounce back at home to the premier division’s bottom club Darwen tomorrow.
Gate: Speight, Richards, Carroll, Penswick, Higham, Noblet, McKendrick, Gibson, Stayte, Tanser, R.Seear; Subs: Thornber, Buchan, Riley.