Barnstaple Town were brought back down to earth with an almighty thud at Winchester City on Saturday.
Barum were beaten 7-0 by the Division One South play-off hopefuls after conceding five goals in the final 15 minutes.
Late withdrawals meant Barnstaple travelled with 14 players, with assistant manager Josh Pearce on the substitutes bench along with Aaron and Jed Harper-Penman’s brother Aidan.
They had been reduced to 10 men after half an hour when captain Jack Jenkins was shown a straight red card for a challenge on Jamie Barron.
They went behind five minutes before half time when Barron converted a penalty, given after Mark Cann brought down Oli Bailey.
Winchester doubled their lead shortly after the break through Simba Mlambo.
Bailey added the third 13 minutes before the final whistle and it was one-way traffic from there on in.
Tyrell Mitford scored twice, with Liam Gilbert and Joe Hayward also finding the net as Winchester ran up the score.
The result brings a four-game unbeaten run to an end for Barnstaple.
“It just wasn’t a great week for us,” said Barnstaple boss Aaron Harper-Penman.
“We had a lot missing which wasn’t ideal, but we got on with it and we started brightly.
“Obviously Jack Jenkins got sent off, which was never a red card in a million years. I think the referee got influenced by some of the other players in my opinion.
“It had us up against the wall, and they made the extra man count.
“We conceded the penalty just before half-time, which seems to be the time we concede our goals.
“Then it was just about trying to stick in and be hard to break down. They got the second and the third came on 77 minutes, and then we just collapsed.
“We didn’t have the numbers to keep with it and it told in the last 15 minutes, we all just sat down.
“At 3-0, with 10 men, people would have seen the result and thought that’s not too bad, and I think that’s what the game deserved.”
Barnstaple go to Cirencester Town this Saturday, which is probably one of the least favoured places to go on the back of a 7-0 defeat.
Harper-Penman said: “We’ve got to go and put last week’s game out of our mind. We’re under no illusion it’s going to be a tough week.
“They’re an in-form team, scoring left, right and centre and they have two of the top scorers.
“We know the challenge we’re facing. We went on a little run and came back with a bang which will make us reassess things again.”