CTLFC put up a brave fight against league leaders Plymouth Argyle LFC on Sunday but in the end went down 5-0 to a team looking well set for promotion.
The Ladies started brightly and for 35 minutes contained their opponents and had the clearer chances on goal. In particular one scramble in the Argyle goalmouth in the 20th minute left the crowd wondering how the ball didn't go in.
However, Argyle possess last season's league top goalscorer Natasha Knapman, and she was quick to pounce on defensive hesitancy to open the scoring.
Less than five minutes later she doubled her tally by peeling off her marker and heading a second at the back post for a 2-0 half-time lead.
In the second half Cheltenham continued to compete well but after a disputed third goal for Argyle, scored after the ball had clearly gone out of play, the contest was effectively over.
Argyle scored a fourth after a slick passing movement and with 20 minutes to go manager Graham Fletcher went for the triple substitution bringing on Louise Bull, Holly Kay and Annabel Davies for Jade Wiltshire, Ella Hitchcox and Louise Fensome. The trio brought fresh legs to the side and the Ladies never gave up hope battling to the last.
But the tide was only flowing one way and the away side scored a flattering fifth in the final minutes.
Graham Fletcher said: "For the first period there was nothing to separate the two sides in terms of skill, endeavour and commitment. The score flattered them, as it looks like we got hammered, when we didn¹t. We have a few players carrying knocks but their passion to play is unstinting."
CTLFC: Panniers, Wiltshire (Bull), Purvis, Brown-Wealls (capt), Walters, Butterfield, Fensome (Davies), Hateley, Salleh, Hitchox (Kay), Briscoe.