MK Dons suffered a first defeat in six games after they were beaten 4-2 by Morecambe at the Globe Arena.
After five straight wins, the Dons had arrived in the automatic spots, but were 3-0 down shortly after half-time courtesy of a Richie Bennett double and an Ouss Cisse own goal.
Kieran Agard struck two goals in six minutes to raise hopes of a comeback, but a late Aaron Collin goal ended the Dons’ hopes of taking points back from a windy evening in the North West.
The result ends the Dons’ streak, and also sees them drop out of the automatic promotion spots after rivals Mansfield Town drew with Crawley Town. The two sides are split by goal difference, with a 5 point gap to second place Bury and a 4 point gap to fourth place Tranmere.
A windy night saw both sides initially have problems coping with the conditions. But Morecambe adjusted to the weather quicker and took the lead.
They did so through Bennett, who scrambled in the opener with a header from Rhys Oates’ cross.
MK Dons struggled to get forward in the opening half of the action, and fell two behind in the final moments of the first half when a Zak Mills cross deflected in off Cisse for an own goal.
Morecambe extended their advantage to three within 12 minutes of the restart, with Bennett nabbing a second as he turned on the edge of the box and dispatched a crisp effort beyond Stuart Moore.
As the half continued, the Dons began to get back into things, as Agard nabbed two goals in 6 minutes to bring his side close to parity.
His first saw him touch home Alex Gilbey’s strike from outside the box, while his second saw the striker poke a loose ball over the line.
This saw a very open game, as Bennett was denied by Moore shortly before Robbie Simpson saw a strike kept out.
But the home side wrapped up the points in the final minutes, as Collin was played through, rounded Moore, and rolled the ball across the line to secure the points for the strugglers and end the Dons’ hopes of taking any reward home.