The Robins fell to their fourth league defeat of the season after a 1-0 loss against Northampton Town at the Completely-Suzuki Stadium.
In a game that saw a range of weather conditions, a rather uneventful first half saw neither goalkeeper tested despite Will Ferry having a promising effort rise over the upright.
Cheltenham grew into the game, creating several chances but could only work Max Thompson in the Northampton goal on one standout occasion.
The decisive goal came with added time looming as Sam Hoskins found room in behind the Robins defence before firing home, placing defeat on Wade Elliott's side.
“In the second half it looked like if one team was going to edge it, it was going to be us but ultimately, we can’t keep relying on a clean sheet to accumulate points,” said Elliot after the game.
“They didn’t have to work too hard for it but it is difficult for centre halves as they are constantly living on the edge because if they make one mistake, they know it is going to be critical.
“I feel for them as a group because I don’t think in terms of effort, they could’ve given us anymore.”
It was a free-flowing contest from the first whistle as both sides had efforts on goal with Ferry blazing over for the Robins after quick footwork to fashion the opening.
Soon after the visitors took control with Patrick Brough lasering one narrowly wide before Sam Sherring rattled the crossbar with a flicked header.
The Robins continued to push against the waves of Northampton attacks but despite several impressive runs from Luciano D’Auria-Henry, they were unable to create anything of note.
With half time approaching, the Robins started to wobble but had Ferry to thank for a fantastic block to stop a Mitch Pinnock shot in the area.
The visitors carried over their momentum from the first half into the second as a floated ball from Pinnock found Brough whose effort curled wide of the upright.
Liam Sercombe was at the centre of all things good for the Robins in the second 45.
His marauding runs forward opened up space for others as Rob Street miscued his effort before Sercombe’s driven effort was deflected into the goalkeeper’s hands.
The Robins continued to come forward as substitute Ben Williams’ lifted cross found D’Auria-Henry whose header was blocked.
Sercombe was then influencing play once again as a smart one-two between him and Aidan Keena released the Irishman, but he couldn’t keep his shot under control.
The Robins were dealt a killer blow with two minutes of normal time remaining as a slip from Lewis Freestone allowed Hoskins to run free before he lashed an effort past Luke Southwood.
CHELTENHAM TOWN (3-5-2): Southwood, Long (c), Davies (Sambu 90), Freestone; D'Auria-Henry, Sercombe, Thompson (Williams 79), Bonds (Adshead 90), Ferry; Keena, Street. Subs not used: Harris (Gk), Bradbury, Bevan, King
NORTHAMPTON TOWN (4-2-3-1): Thompson; Odimayo (Monthe 84), Sherring, Guthrie (c), Brough; Sowerby (McWilliams 84), Leonard; Hoskins, Pinnock (Lintott 84), Bowie (Simpson 57); Appere (Hondermarck 68). Subs not used: Dadge (Gk), Dyche
REFEREE: T Nield
ATTENDANCE: 3,907 (692 away)