AFC Fylde continued their perfect start to the new year as they came from behind against Eastbourne Borough to reach the third round of the FA Trophy.
The 14-hour round trip to the south coast proved worthwhile as goals from Josh Langley, Danny Lloyd (2) and Danny Rowe earned the Coasters a 4-1 victory and progression into the final 16 of the competition.
Coasters boss Dave Challinor made three changes from the team that beat Skelmersdale on Wednesday night with Josh Wilson, Stephen Crainey and Richie Baker coming in for Brad Barnes, Alex Whittle and Matty Hughes.
Both sides traded possession early on but it was the Coasters who had the first big chance of the game when Crainey fed Rowe who turned his marker and fired a shot narrowly wide of the right hand post.
Eastbourne responded with Sam Beale taking on Caspar Hughes, cutting on to his right foot and bending a shot over Mat Urwin’s goal.
Fylde began to stamp their authority on the game, dominating possession and a Baker cross almost met the head of Tom Hannigan at the back post.
Miguel Baptista had an effort for the hosts although his shot from 25 yards was scuffed after a slip and was easy for Urwin.
A corner from Lloyd almost brought the first goal but Josh Wilson’s near post flick, a carbon copy of Rowe’s goal in mid-week, was just the wrong side of the post.
Moments later and the Coasters had the best chance of the game. Sam Finley beat his man to a loose ball in the box and he drilled a shot which thundered off the woodwork. Nice passing play from the Coasters saw Finley have another effort, this time from the edge of the box, but the keeper saw it all the way.
The hosts took a surprise lead after 29 minutes when Nathan Collier turned in the box and shot from six yards and although Urwin got a hand to the effort he couldn’t prevent it creeping into the far right corner.
Fylde responded in the best possible fashion just five minutes later. Baker’s cross from Lloyd’s short corner saw a goalmouth scramble which culminated with Langley stabbing home from a couple of yards out.
Dion Charles almost gave the Coasters the lead after beating his marker and rounding the keeper but his shot from a tight angle flashed agonisingly wide of the left hand post.
Rowe had an effort from 20 yards blocked by an Eastbourne defender and seconds later the referee called time on a first half which saw the Coasters dominate the latter stages.
Just seconds after the restart and the Coasters were ahead. Lloyd ran at the Eastbourne centre halves before cutting on to his favoured left foot and firing low underneath Carey.
Miguel Baptista nearly scored a stunning equaliser for the hosts when his right footed from the edge of the box strike flew narrowly wide of the top right corner.
Eastbourne started to gain some momentum and Gavin McCallum’s low effort from 12 yards nearly crept into the bottom left corner, with some sections of the crowd prematurely cheering an equaliser.
A second goal from Lloyd put Fylde well in control just after the hour mark. Finley shot from the edge of the box and his effort was deflected into the path of Lloyd who fired an effort on the half volley and the ball crept into the bottom right corner.
Lloyd could and should have completed his hat-trick just a few minutes later. Rowe played in the winger who was one-on-one with goalkeeper Carey, but this time his strike was agonisingly wide of the right hand post.
Challinor made his first change with twenty minutes to go as Matty Hughes replaced Charles and the substitute felt he should have been awarded a penalty after being pushed from behind when about to shoot in the area.
Fylde sealed their progress into the last sixteen of the competition with seven minutes to go when Finley played in Rowe on the right hand side and he took no mercy, smashing home from ten yards.
Eastbourne threatened a late consolation but Urwin stood firm to deny Nathaniel Pinney after the powerful striker forced Langley off the ball.
Eastbourne Borough: Carey, Stone, Beale, Baptista (Haysman 65), Simpemba, Khinda-John, Hamilton, Collier, Pinney, McCallum, Romain (Lok 63).
Subs not used:Street, Worrall, Gregory.
Goals: Collier (29)
AFC Fylde: Urwin, C. Hughes, Langley, Hannigan, Crainey, Wilson, Baker, Finley (Barnes 87), Charles (M. Hughes 71), Lloyd, Rowe.
Subs not used: Hinchliffe, Whittle, Blinkhorn.
Goals: Langley (34), Lloyd (46,61) Rowe (83)
Ref: Constantine Hatzidakis