Ten man Padiham kept their first clean sheet of the season to beat West Didsbury and Chorlton at the Ruby Civil Arena.
The home side didn’t dwell on their numerical disadvantage after Alan Zuqoli was dismissed for serious foul play before the interval.
Substitute Jake Hargreaves was the match-winner, netting the only goal of the game with a quarter-of-an-hour remaining.
The visitors tested the water first when Jack Langford moved the ball on to his right foot on the edge of the penalty area but cleared the crossbar with his attempt.
Liam O’Neill went close at the other end, cutting past Saul Brew-Butler before swinging an attempt just wide of the upright.
After Saul Henderson forced a save from Tony Aghayere, the Storks went straight down the other end but Lee Knight was off target from Michael Fowler’s pass.
Henderson’s looping header then came back off the bar after the striker climbed above Jack Taylor and then James Dean thumped a header against the woodwork when unchallenged from a corner.
Auqoli stabbed wide of the post for the Storks after beating William Jones to Ben Hoskin’s pass while Fowler’s header clipped the bar shortly after.
The Storks then had to play just short of an hour with 10 men when Zuqoli was shown a straight red for a reckless challenge on Langford.
Jones did well to keep the game level early in the second half when beating away Fowler’s attempt from distance before getting to his feet to block from Oliver Ford.
And then it was the turn of Aghayere. The former Colne stopper denied Henderson with his legs and did the same to keep out Langford after Josh Stachini’s cross picked him out at the back post.
Dean denied Henderson a tap in when cutting out Langford’s delivery and it was that intervention that paved the way for the opener.
Chris Turner’s distribution was exceptional, with his cross dropping right on the edge of the six yard box, and Hargreaves threw himself at the ball to guide it past Jones.
Aghayere just did enough to preserve his side’s lead when keeping out Christian Banasko before Hargreaves grazed the outside of the post after wriggling his way in to the box.