Northampton Town Under 18s lost 1-0 away to AFC Wimbledon in the opening fixture of their EFL Youth Alliance South East campaign on Saturday morning.
The young Cobblers conceded an added-time winner as they began the season with a defeat in wet and windy conditions.
Both sides created early chances, the hosts hitting the crossbar from a cutback and Reuben Wyatt half-volleying off target from long range at the other end.
Harry Guess’ low strike from Wyatt’s through ball was held by Max Foulkes before Kiantay Licorish-Mullings made a sliding interception to divert George Upsdell’s low ball across goal behind for a corner as the end-to-end theme continued on the quarter-of-an-hour mark.
Wyatt curled an edge-of-the-area free-kick, awarded for handball, around the wall but narrowly wide and a scramble in the Cobblers box led to a close-range shot across goal that was beaten away by Stevie Bausor on the half-hour.
The final opportunity of the opening 45 minutes fell to the visitors, Matty Ireland linking-up with Charlie Carroll on the left wing and drilling in a dangerous low cross that was cleared before a teammate was able to convert in the middle.
Jamari Hart beat the offside trap and reached Carroll’s through ball but was unable to round Foulkes and captain Jacob Scott flicked a header over from Licorish-Mullings’ looping long throw in the first quarter-of-an-hour of the second half.
AFC Wimbledon also threatened a number of times around the hour mark, Bausor catching a curled effort from the edge of the area, holding Jake Lawrence’s low drive from a similar position and making a block to deny Kai Jennings at the near post.
There were chances at both ends within a minute of each other going into the last 10, Reuben Amissah whipping the ball across the Cobblers goal with substitute Kevin Kargbo unable to reach it at the far post and the hosts clearing off the line before the resulting corner caused them problems but bounced wide of the far post.
Bausor dived to his right and palmed away a low effort that was bouncing across goal late on, but there was still time for Kargbo to smash a loose ball home from six yards to snatch all three points for his side in injury time.
The youth team host Gillingham in their first home fixture of the season next week.
Cobblers: Stevie Bausor, Will Ronald, Leo Jenkins, Kiantay Licorish-Mullings, Matty Ireland, James Owen, Jacob Scott, Harry Guess, Reuben Wyatt, Charlie Carroll, Jamari Hart
Substitutes: Elliot Smith, Freddie Findlay, George Daldy, Ollie Evans, George Steers