Marcus Marshall replaced the injured Jon Nolan for this Vanarama Conference game against Welling United at Sincil Bank Stadium whilst there was a return to the bench for Alex Simmons following a month on loan at Spalding United.
It was a sunny yet chilly Saturday afternoon as referee Ryan Johnson led the two team out and once the pre-match formalities with the two captains was complete, play got underway with Welling kicking off attacking the Stacey West Stand.
City started brightly with Jordan Cranston slicing a long-range effort wide of the target and with Tom Miller forced off with a cut lip following an aerial challenge on the half-way line, Ben Tomlinson had a fourth minute effort ruled out for offside following a free-kick into the danger area.
Six minutes mater Marshall was inches away from connecting with a Tomlinson cross after the latter was set free down the left following a smart pass by Alan Power. The City skipper then released Delano Sam-Yorke but he ran out of pitch after surging past his marker.
Sam-Yorke was denied by a fine Jonathan Henly save as the Imps continued to dominate towards the quarter-hour mark whilst in the 19th minute Henly and defender Michael Chambers clattered into each other with Sam-Yorke somehow penalised for a foul, despite being two yards away from the incident!
Play quickly switched to the other end and with their first sight of goal, Welling drew first blood; Dominic Vose creating space for himself before drilling a low effort past Paul Farman from 25 yards.
City looked for a quick response but the ball bounced away from Marshall after Power had a shot charged down and after Jake Caprice won a corner on the right Power's delivery was claimed by Henly at full stretch.
The visitors hit City with a sucker-punch shortly after the half-hour mark when a hopeful punt forward saw the flag stay down, giving Jason Williams the chance to advance before slotting neatly past Farman.
City's reply saw Robinson have an effort charged down before two corners failed to force Henly into a save. In the closing stages of the opening half Tomlinson fired a long-range effort just over the bar before Bencherif drilled a low effort just wide.
HT: IMPS 0 WELLING 2
The teams emerged unchanged for the start of the second half and it was the visitors who were the first to threaten with Williams flicking a cross on to the top of the bar and out for a goal-kick.
Shortly afterwards Farman was forced to back pedal to get to a looping lob from Gallagher before City got the ball down at the other end and forced a corner which was taken by Power and headed over by Brown.
As the hour mark approached Marshall headed a Caprice cross wide of the target with Farman booked for dissent as the visitors took an age over the taking of the resultant goal-kick.
Alex Simmons replaced Marcus Marshall in the 61st minute whilst two minutes later Sam Berry was deservedly booked for a late challenge on Tomlinson. Jason Williams was the booked following a late challenge on Cranston.
In the 73rd minute John Marsden replaced Conner Robinson for City and after Henly held a Sam-Yorke header following a Simmons cross, Zach Fagan came on for Dominic Vose for the visitors.
City had a great shout for a penalty in the 79th minute when Sam-Yorke was sent flying in the box but somehow referee Johnson failed to spot it and play resumed with a goal-kick to Welling.
With seven minutes on the clock Jordan Burrow replaced Jake Caprice before Tomlinson had a header held by Henly after he was picked out by Bencherif. Rod Young the came on for Jason Williams for Welling.
In the closing stages of normal time and before a minimum of five minutes was indicated by the Fourth Official, City forced a couple of corners but the Welling defence held firm.
The only chance of note during the extra stages came after the Imps were awarded a free-kick 25 yards out but Bencherif's effort summed up the afternoon's efforts in that it was disappointing and off the mark.
There was still time for some late drama with Sam-Yorke sent off following an off-the-ball incident with Berry. Both players were wrestling on the deck but whilst the Welling man escaped punishment, referee Johnson was quick to show the City man a red card.
FT: IMPS 0 WELLING 2
10 Kieron ST. AIMIE
5 Zach FAGAN (for VOSE 75)
7 Rod YOUNG (for J WILLIAMS 84)
25 Joseph TAYLOR
35 Aristide BASSELE
21 Michael McENTEGART
GOALS: VOSE (20), J WILLIAMS (31)
BOOKINGS: BERRY (63), J WILLIAMS (69), YOUNG (90+7)