THE Wingmakers came within seconds of ending an alarming run of defeats with a battling display at Bangor City.
But, with the game in stoppage time and the scores level at 1-1, the Citizens were awarded a free-kick which was floated into the box for Anthony Miley to volley home the winner for a relieved home side.
It was far less than Airbus deserved but manager Andy Thomas and his new assistant Steve O'Shaguhnessy will take heart from the performance of a side with an average age of under 21. With exprerienced trio Ryan Fraughan, Matty McGinn and Ashley Williams sidelined and Tony Gray serving out a three-match suspension, Thomas handed a second first-team start to 17-year-old Zebb Edwards.
The first chance of the game went the way of Airbus but Liam O'Neill's shot was well saved by Connor Roberts before Bangor took the lead in the eighth-minute, Dan Nardiello powering a bullet header into the net from a Henry Jones cross.
James Murphy teased the home defence with a couple of dangerous crosses while, at the other end, City debutant Michael Higdon went down in the box but referee Rob Jenkins waved penalty claims away. Another Airbus cross found Jake Hulley, whose shot was blocked by the combined efforts of Lawrence Wilson and Roberts while Nardiello headed just wide for City.
It took some stout defending from former Wingmaker Leon Clowes and Miley to keep Airbus at bay but City nearly doubled their lead when a long range effort from Brayden Shaw rattled the crossbar. The visitors were rewarded for their persistence on the stroke of half-time when Liam O'Neill scored his first for the club to end a 438-minute goal drought in league action.
Clowes went close to restoring City's lead just after the break but his shot was cleared off the line by Murphy, while Airbus went close when a long ball found Ryan Wignall, whose chip over the keeper was cleared off the home line by Miley.
It took an excellent save by Roberts to deny Wignall, before O'Neill hit a post and, from the rebound, Ryan J Edwards had the ball in the City net only to be denied by an assistant's flag.
Wignall who saw another shot parried wide following a succession of away corners and Nardiello volleyed the ball into the net five minutes from time only to be flagged offside but, with a point seemingly within their grasp, Airbus then cruelly succumbed to Miley's late winner.
Photos (top) Airbus defend a Bangor attack and (below) Zebb Edwards keeps tabs on his opponent [courtesy Andre Pepper].