PORT Talbot suffered a setback in their bid to secure a Welsh Premier League play-off place after losing 3-1 at Bala.
The Steelmen were looking to build on back-to-back wins against Afan Lido and Prestatyn in North Wales, but went behind on nine minutes.
Kenny Lunt was felled in the box by Gethin Jones and Ian Sheridan converted from the penalty spot.
Guillem Bauza had earlier put a chance wide for Port Talbot in the game’s first attack and afterwards Sacha Walters sent a good chance over the bar.
Stuart Jones headed over at the other end, while only a good save from Ashley Morris prevented Walters from equalising with a header.
Bala missed the chance to double their lead on 22 minutes when Port Talbot stopper Steven Hall brought down Sheridan.
But the keeper redeemed himself by comfortably saving the following penalty to give Port Talbot hope.
And the visitors levelled on the half-hour mark when Stuart Jones cleared straight to Rhys Griffiths, who tapped home from two yards out for his 19th goal of the campaign.
Having fought to get back in to the game, Port Talbot were behind again four minutes later as Lunt shrugged off two defenders before curling an 18-yard effort past Hall.
Three minutes into the second period, Mark Connolly added a third for the hosts with a trademark free kick after being fouled just outside the box.
And any hopes of a Port Talbot comeback were dealt a blow on 72 minutes when Adie Harris was sent-off for a second yellow card after bringing down Connolly.
The result leaves Scott Young’s side ninth in the table, 11 points off seventh-place Aberystwyth.