Rushden & Diamonds 8-0 Gateshead
The only consolation from this Nene Park nightmare was that Gateshead just managed to avoid rewriting the record books in terms of the heaviest defeat in the club's history.
The Tynesiders shipped six goals in the second half to go down 8-0 in Northamptonshire against a rampant Diamonds side on the crest of a wave.
A 0-9 defeat at home to Sutton United two decades ago remains Gateshead's nadir though avoiding equalling or bettering that unwanted milestone will not provoke dancing in the streets of the Old Fold.
This was a humiliating day for all concerned with Gateshead Football Club and one that will hopefully provide a reaction that will keep the club in the Blue Square Premier.
Coach Paul Thompson, a great servant to the club over the years as a player and latterly behind the scenes, could not hide his disgust at such an abject display.
"It was horrendous, unbelievable and disgraceful," was Thommo's candid analysis "not one player from 1-11 performed and we were absolutely abysmal.
"We didn't play well in the first half and weren't tracking their runners but conceding the second goal in the last minute was a setback.
"At one down we had a chance in the second half but instead Rushden & Diamonds stepped on the gas and we couldn't live with them."
Manager Ian Bogie described the horror show one of his worst moments in football, if not the worst, and was as shell-shocked as the players.
"It is the biggest defeat in my career as a player or manager," said Bogie "and if it hurts the players as much as me they won't have slept well on Saturday night.
"It was a total embarrassment. We were second best all over the park and the manner and size of the defeat was
"Rushden could have beaten us with six players we were so bad and if we had played another ten minutes it would have been double figures."
Not for the first time this season messrs Bogie, Wrightson and Thompson will have to lift the players with a massive game against Forest Green Rovers on the horizon.
"We'll dust ourselves down, train on Monday night and hopefully get the win we need on Tuesday to put us eight points ahead of Forest Green and above Eastbourne and Ebbsfleet."
Certainly another demoralising defeat cannot be contemplated and the return of defensive kingpin James Curtis and, hopefully, striker Daryl Clare will lift the side.
Bogie also hopes to add yet another new face, possibly two, to an engine room without captain Kris Gate and the suspended Andy Ferrell.
It all went downhill after just five minutes at Nene Park when Diamonds captain Jamie Stuart rose to head home a Mark Byrne corner.
Aaron O'Connor was wide with another effort before Peter Winn shot straight at Dale Roberts and Brian Wake just failed to convert Phil Turnbull's cross at the back post.
Michael Corcoran headed over as Gateshead again struggled to defend a corner only for the visitors to crucially concede a second goal on the stroke of half-time.
Jefferson Louis found Tomlin whose first time flick picked out the incoming Max Porter who drilled a shot beneath Farman for a well worked goal.
If that was a hammer blow two goals in the opening nine minutes of the second half emphasised the gulf between the two sides.
Tomlin was again the architect with a great ball that saw Louis volley home from the edge of the box and then Byrne scored from 12 yards following a throw in from the right.
The wheels had come off and Gateshead were dismantled again on 65 minutes when the impressive Tomlin made it five after good work from sub. Craig Farrell and Porter.
A Louis header from Farrrell's cross was followed by a Farrell screamer from the edge of the box and a Simon Downer goal after a defensive howler completed the rout.
In between an overworked Farman, who had to deal with 22 efforts on the Gateshead goal, produced a fine save from Farrell.
A ragged Gateshead were not so much on the ropes but flat out on the canvas fumbling for the smelling salts and the final whistle mercifully put them out of their misery.
The win, Rushden & Diamond's biggest in their relatively short history, kept Justin Edinburgh's side firmly in the promotion hunt.
"I wasn't impressed with our first half performance. We were lack-lustre but I got the response I expected and in the second half we were very, very good," said former Tottenham man Edinburgh.
"Our passing was excellent and we scored some great goals. I can't speak highly enough of the players and I'm proud to be their manager."
Rushden & Diamonds: Roberts, Corcoran (Osano 66), Downer, Stuart, Robinson, Porter, Terry, Byrne, O'Connor (Farrell 61), Louis, Tomlin (Smith 76).
Subs (not used): Day (gk), Pattison.
Goals: Stuart (6), Porter (45), Louis (50, 78) Byrne (54), Tomlin (65), Farrell (81), Downer (85)
Shots On target: 16
Shots Off target: 6
Gateshead: Farman, Baxter, Heckingbottom, Francis, Swailes, Jones, Parkinson (Sinclair 53), Turnbull, Armstrong, Wake (Richardson 53),Winn (Phillips 68)
Subs (not used): Provett (gk), Buchanan.
Booked: Baxter, Armstrong, Farman
Shots On target: 3
Shots Off target: 0
Referee: James Adcock (Nottinghamshire).