Grimsby boss Paul Hurst admitted the club’s promotion to the Football League ‘softened the blow’ of losing the FA Trophy final to Halifax.
Hurst praised the tactical approach of The Shaymen, and felt the fact that Town had not played for three weeks meant they were fresher on the day.
He said: “Yes it was disappointing. It would have been nice and, to use a cliché, the icing on the cake after what’s been a great season.
“Credit to Halifax though. It was a strange set-up in that we’ve been promoted and they’ve been relegated. They hadn’t played for a while and we were on a massive high from last week, so it was strange.
“It was a nice way for their season to end after a major disappointment though. For ourselves, it was a disappointment today, but I honestly didn’t feel like I was watching my team out there in truth.
“That’s not taking anything away from Halifax at all, because I thought they made it extremely difficult for us, played to a game-plan and looked like they just had a little more in the legs than we did.”
Hurst was disappointed to be on the losing side a week after tasting success in the play-off final, but admitted that victory was the club’s main priority.
He added: “We’d have certainly taken promotion at the start of the season and if we were going to win one, it would have been that one. That’s not to say I wouldn’t have wanted to have done the double.
“I don’t want anyone to think that I’m really happy and that I don’t mind losing, because I do. But at the same time, last week certainly softens the blow. I’m proud of the players and the efforts they’ve put in over the course of the season and that’s why we have to enjoy the highs like last weekend, which was the ultimate one.”
Captain Craig Disley echoed his manager’s thoughts, and thought The Mariners didn’t play to their potential against The Shaymen.
“It was a bit of a comedown after the elation of last weekend and we’re disappointed, but I don’t think we can be too disappointed,” Disley said.
“We didn’t perform how I know we can, even though I thought we played some decent stuff – we just didn’t have that cutting edge to score a goal. There wasn’t a great deal in the game.
“It was a bonus game after last weekend, we achieved what we wanted to achieve last weekend.
“We’re disappointed, but not upset at how the season has gone.”