Godmanchester Rovers and Eynesbury Rovers saw off lower-level opponents to make FA Vase progress last Saturday – but Huntingdon Town suffered stoppage-time heartbreak at the hands of higher-level hosts.
Striker Ben Yeomans headed the only goal as Godmanchester beat Raunds Town at the David Wilson Homes Ground to reach the first round proper of the national competition.
Yeomans struck following fine work from substitute Zac Knight-Percival to break the resistance of 10-man visitors, who had seen their goalkeeper sent off for handling outside the box during the first half.
“It wasn’t our best performance by any means,” said manager Ollie Drake. “But the winning mentality we have developed lately got us over the line.”
Eynesbury had to come from behind to see off Burton Park Wanderers in another second qualifying round tie.
The local side found themselves strailing in the first half at Hall Road before leading scorer Dominic Lawless squandered a golden opportunity to level when his penalty was saved.
But two efforts in quick succession just before the hour enabled Eynesbury to claim a 2-1 victory.
Curtis Hartley restored parity when pouncing from close range after substitute Tom Coles headed against the bar – and the same piece of woodwork was involved when the turnaround was completed moments later.
A Lawless shot crashed back off the bar, struck visiting defender Dalton Bettles and went in.
Huntingdon bowed out after conceding a deflected winner in the 91st minute at Holbeach.
It was a cruel exit for Town after a battling performance against higher-level hosts in Lincolnshire.
They fell behind after a quarter-of-an-hour but Steven Slack headed them level 12 minutes later in his return to action after several weeks out.
Town man Connor Clarke saw a second-half penalty saved before the match was settled late on with extra-time looming.
“I’m absolutely gutted for the lads to lose to a 91st minute winner,” said Town co-boss Jimmy Brattan. “But we gave a good account of ourselves.”