Former Macclesfield Town loanee Owen Evans proved to be the hero last night, as his first-half penalty save set Cheltenham Town on their way to a 2 - 0 victory over Northampton Town in the Sky Bet League Two Play-Offs.
The Wigan Athletic stopper made the move to Gloucestershire back in January and continued his fine record of saving spot-kicks by denying Ryan Watson from twelve-yards out.
The Robins opened the scoring shortly after, when Charlie Raglan's glancing header found the back of the net to put Michael Duff's side into the ascendancy.
Their lead was doubled in the 86th minute, when Conor Thomas slotted home from close-range to hand Cheltenham a commanding two-goal cushion ahead of Monday's second leg at the Jonny-Rocks Stadium.
Earlier, Colchester United had squeezed past Exeter City in the first play-off encounter - as Cohen Bramall's dramatic late free-kick handed the U's a precious 1 - 0 advantage.
In what was the EFL's first competitive fixture since the start of March, the game proved to be a cagey one with both sides cancelling each other out for long periods.
Bramall's 81's minute strike handed John McGreal's side the slenderest of advantages ahead of the return leg at St James Park on Monday evening, where a place at Wembley Stadium will be on offer in order to contest the much-anticipated Sky Bet League Two Play-Off Final.