Clitheroe suffered a fifth game without a win as the Blues were beaten 1-0 by fellow play-off hopefuls Spennymoor Town at Shawbridge on Saturday.
Simon Garner’s side are now without a victory since beating Bacup Borough in the LFA Challenge Trophy at the start of December, while they have not picked up three points in the league since the home win against Droylsden back in November.
The only goal of the game arrived after just four minutes. A corner found its way to Nathan Curtis, and his shot fell nicely for striker Nathan Fisher, who turned and fired past keeper Ben Woodhead.
The Blues responded well, and James Heywood picked out Sefton Gonzales, who volleyed wide.
Chances were few and far between in the first half, but the visitors looked to double their lead shortly before the break when Liam Henderson sent an overhead kick into the hands of Woodhead.
In the second half, two controversial incidents shaped the outcome of the game.
The first came just before the hour as the ball appeared to hit a Spennymoor player’s hand in the box, but appeals for what looked a blatant penalty were waved away by the referee.
Then at the death, a Clitheroe was pumped into the box, with the ball cleared off the line – although there were strong claims that the ball had gone over the line.
The defeat saw Clitheroe drop to 12th in the Evo-Stik First Division North.
Clitheroe: Woodhead, Heywood, Barski (Walker), Lynch, Brady, Bonaminio (Willoughby), Bakkor, Dent, Gonzales, Harries, Mayers. Subs not used: Cattermole, Steele.