Sleaford Town manager Jamie Shaw is demanding improvement after individual errors sparked a second-half capitulation at Wellingborough on Saturday.
Town went into the game buoyed by a win seven days earlier which lifted them out of the United Counties League Premier relegation places.
But facing a side just a few places above them in the table, Town conceded five times after the break.
The day could have ended so much differently had Sleaford taken the opportunities they created in an even, goalless first half.
Michael Hayden and Liam Harris both spurned good chances, while the home keeper Jak Riley made a fine save to tip Harry Millard’s shot onto the post.
But a classic tale of two halves saw the visitors press the self-destruct button after half-time, falling behind to a Nat Ansu strike within 10 seconds of the restart.
“The score perhaps didn’t tell the full story of the whole game, but definitely represented the second half accurately,” said Shaw.
“Throughout the half we made individual errors all across the park which led to their goals, and were unable to cause them the same kind of problems that we had done in the first half.”
Wellingborough almost doubled their lead soon after when Gary Doran saved Akinremi’s shot, and from the resulting corner, Ellwood twice saw efforts cleared off the line.
But the hosts, under a new caretaker manager, did make it 2-0 after 54 minutes through Speight’s low right-foot shot, and just three minutes later Ellwood turned and fired in from the edge of the penalty area.
With eight minutes left, Ellwood intercepted a weak backpass and knocked the ball to his right for Ansu to slide in the fourth, and Town’ misery was complete in the final minute when Ellwood headed home from Joyce’s corner.
Town remain third-bottom, but Shaw hopes to have a more settled side on Saturday when fourth-placed Deeping Rangers visit Eslaforde Park (ko 3pm).
He added: “Due to availability we had to make a number of changes to the starting XI and that included bringing people in who hadn’t played in a little while which was unfair on them and caused us problems throughout the game.
“All in all it was a very disappointing day and something we will need to rectify ahead of Saturday.”