Crewe Alex slipped to a single-goal defeat after a disappointing second-half display at Carlisle United on Saturday.
The Railwaymen were impressive in the first 45 minutes and were unfortunate not to lead after hitting a post and creating the best of the chances.
But the life went out of their performance after the restart and Sam Cosgrove’s strike was all the Cumbrians needed to take the points.
The result leaves Crewe 20th in League Two, six points clear of the drop zone.
Carlisle News & Star
Carlisle United 1 Crewe Alexandra 0: For a scoreline which is often dream stuff for managers, there seemed a lot of angst accompanying this 1-0 Carlisle United win. For Sam Cosgrove, though, it was a day of nothing but joy.
After a first half which had some supporters checking their memories for a less invigorating Brunton Park afternoon, the narrative was grabbed by a young striker who was, until the 76th minute, searching for his first professional goal.
What happened reminded us that, even on the gloomiest of days generally, good stories can still emerge. Cosgrove, whose future at United was in the balance during 2017's final weeks, made himself the hero here, peeling away to the far post to head home Tom Parkes' deep, deflected cross.
It was a goal the 21-year-old had threatened to score in his three starts since the turn of the year. Cosgrove had hit the post and seen two efforts disallowed in a United shirt before persistence finally paid off.
The result was a Carlisle victory that will not feature on an extended highlights DVD, but was a win nonetheless. In this highly inconsistent season, it would seem churlish to turn that down on style grounds, however tempting that might be.
Carlisle United Official Website
It was back to League Two action for the Blues on Saturday with Crewe Alexandra the latest visitors to Brunton Park.
Carlisle showed patience and determination as they eventually got the goal - a first for the club for Sam Cosgrove - which earned them the points in a tight game against a hard working Crewe outfit.