Macauley Bonne’s first-half penalty for Leyton Orient subjected AFC Fylde to their first home league defeat in five months.
In a match boasting the two top scoring strikers in the National League, clear-cut opportunities were at a premium and a solitary strike from Bonne was enough to decide the result.
The Coasters remain in the final play-off place despite a disappointing afternoon, whilst their opponents climb six points clear of the drop zone.
Fylde boss Dave Challinor went with the same side that was victorious against Gateshead last time out and they went close inside five minutes when Orient foolishly allowed 18-goal Danny Rowe a shooting chance, however the frontman sliced his effort from 25 yards narrowly wide.
Rowe, aiming to pull further clear of his main rival for the Golden Boot, fired another sighter from range that was blocked before it could reach goalkeeper Dean Brill.
Orient were growing into the game and Craig Clay was the first to threaten when his vicious volley from the edge of the area was diverted away from goal by Jordan Tunnicliffe.
Visiting midfielder Dan Holman looked to capitalise on Orient’s spell of pressure when he let fly from 25 yards and Jay Lynch was relieved to see the powerful effort fly inches over the bar.
Henry Jones floated a sweetly-struck free-kick into the area ten minutes from half-time that required the slightest of touches, however the ball evaded everyone in the box and ended up in the goalkeeper’s grateful clutches.
Josh Koroma was proving a handful for the Fylde backline and stung the palms of Jay Lynch from a tight angle, although a cross may have proved more fruitful.
The match sprang to life shortly before the break when Orient were awarded a penalty. Simon Grand hauled down Holman and Bonne made no mistake from the spot, lashing the ball into the bottom left hand corner.
His counterpart Rowe scuffed an effort wide as the half drew to a disappointing end although the home side came out for the second period with a renewed sense of purpose – Zaine Francis-Angol testing Brill with a strike from the edge of the area soon after there restart.
Rowe was presented with an inviting shooting position 20 yards from goal after Jones had been impeded and although he struck the free-kick fantastically well, the ball arrowed a foot wide of the far post.
Koroma was allowed far too much time and space on the hour as he raced from his own half right down to the byline before seeing his low cross-shot blocked at his near post by Lynch.
Bonne had a glorious opportunity to double his personally tally for the afternoon when Brophy burst into the box from the left and fizzed the ball across the box that was inches out of the reach of the stretching Bonne.
Clay dragged one wide from Bonne’s cut-back as the visitors continued to enjoy the better of the goalmouth action.
Orient should have added a second in the final ten minutes when James Brophy picked out Holman on the penalty spot in acres of space, but the midfielder somehow squandered the chance with the ball running over his foot.
The opportunities continued to flow for Orient with Fylde unrecognisable from recent weeks, this time Bonne nodding just over from 10 yards.
Fylde could have taken something from the game in the dying seconds when a breathtaking goalmouth scramble eventually fell to Jones who saw his shot on the turn blocked on the line.
Fylde manager Dave Challinor was brutally honest about the performance of his side: “We started brightly, but we made poor decisions and became impatient. We didn’t ask enough questions of them and we didn’t deserve anything from the game.”
Orient boss Justin Edinburgh believes it may prove to be a pivotal weekend for his troops: “It’s a huge victory against a very good team. Not many teams have left here with three points this season and considering results elsewhere, it’s a massive win for us.”
AFC Fylde: Lynch, Bond (Hardy 65), Burke, Tunnicliffe, Grand (Blinkhorn 76), Francis-Angol, Montrose, Finley, Jones, Rowe, Muldoon (Smith 65).
Subs not used: Taylor, Chettle.
Leyton Orient: Brill, Caprice, Widdowson, Elokobi, Coulson, Koroma (Lawless 86), Clay, Brophy, Holman, Adams, Bonne.
Subs not used: Grainger, Harrold, Happe, Reynolds.
Ref: Karl Evans