Jimmy Knowles' and Ruben Rodrigues’ first Notts goals weren’t enough to prevent a 3-2 defeat at home to Maidenhead United.
The pair had twice given us the lead in the first half, cancelling out Sam Barratt’s equaliser.
But Barratt scored again after the break and Danilo Orsi nudged his side ahead to bring our three-match winning run to an end.
We returned four positive Covid-19 results from the previous day’s round of testing but, following conversations with the National League and Maidenhead, the match was deemed safe to go ahead.
Sam Slocombe took his place between the sticks and was shielded by a back four of Adam Chicksen, Alex Lacey, Connell Rawlinson and Damien McCrory.
Ahead of them, Michael Doyle, Jake Reeves, Enzio Boldewijn and Rodrigues supported forwards Knowles and Kyle Wootton.
We got off to the dream start when, with only three minutes on the clock, we cut the visitors apart with some incisive passing which presented McCrory, playing in an unfamiliar right-back, with the opportunity to cut the ball back for Knowles six yards out. The young loanee made no mistake with his finish.
And we came agonisingly close to making it 2-0 on 11 minutes when Knowles almost turned provider, fizzing a low cross to the back stick and watching on as Boldewijn sent the ball back across goal and just wide.
We were ruing that missed opportunity moments later when the visitors equalised against the run of play, Barratt bagging his first of the afternoon with an emphatic finish after we failed to clear from a wide free-kick.
Maidenhead had a half-chance to turn the game on its head on 29 minutes when Ryan Upward rose highest at the back stick to meet a corner, only to head the ball over.
And this time it was the away side’s time to regret a squandered chance as, seconds later, we restored our lead when Rodrigues charged through the middle, dropped a shoulder to beat his man in the area and produced a delightful low finish to send us into the break ahead.
There were no changes at half-time but we had an opportunity to alter the scoreline in our favour on 55 minutes when Doyle played a clever pass over the top from a drop ball only for Maidenhead keeper Taye Ashby-Hammond to race quickly off his line and smother Wootton’s attempts to score.
We were well in command but on 64 minutes Barratt punished us from a set piece once again, heading a corner into the bottom corner.
And, shortly after Barnsley loanee Matty Wolfe had replaced Rodrigues, the visitors completed the turnaround when Orsi was flicked through on goal and produced a fine finish beyond Slocombe with 15 minutes to play.
Ardley’s next change saw Elisha Sam replace Boldewijn, and Ben Turner also came on for Lacey with five minutes to play.
And the big defender nearly made all the difference when he met Doyle’s free-kick at the back post only to see his header cleared off the line before McCrory fired a long-range effort over in the aftermath.
Five minutes were added on at the end of the match but we couldn’t find an equaliser on a frustrating afternoon at the Lane.