Nigel Greenwood said the women’s team’s 5-3 defeat away at Penrith AFC Ladies was one they would ‘have to take on the chin’.
The Lilywhites started the game well with plenty of possession and were unfortunate to go a goal down early on.
Conceding early on saw the girls react well, getting themselves in front of goal with Abi Cookson who was fouled in the box, which led to a penalty being awarded.
Katie Woodhead stepped up well from the spot, making the game level, and just before half-time the Lilywhites scored another goal to make it 2-1 after a lovely cross from Cookson to pick out Lucy Swift, who found the back of the net.
Like in the first half, Penrith scored within minutes of kick-off for the second half, and went back in front with a third little over 20 minutes later.
Rachelle Smith equalised 15 minutes from time but two more goals from Penrith followed in the closing stages to ensure they took all three points.
The defeat ended the women’s team’s four-match unbeaten run in league and cup competitions.
When looking back on the game, Nigel told PNE.Com: “It’s a disappointing result in the end for the ladies but one we have to take on the chin .
“We spoke after the game that with us being a new team that through the season it would be two steps forward, one step back at times, but as long as we learn from individual and team mistakes we'll be okay.”
Nigel was frustrated by refereeing decisions in the game and in particular felt North End should have had a second penalty.
“We should have had another penalty for handball in the box, which was originally given, but then after the Penrith players surrounded the referee it was changed to a free kick outside the box.
He also felt the game became overly physical, especially in the latter stages, which led to defender Megan Mercer having to come off injured.
“Penrith started to get over physical with 3 particularly robust challenges on Megan Mercer not dealt with appropriately, one which led to a goal and one that led to her injury.
“All in all, it’s a good part of the learning curve for the younger girls in the team.”
Next up for the women’s team is Sunday’s trip to Wigan Athletic Ladies in the third round of the Lancashire FA Women’s Challenge Cup.