Carlisle were at Sincil Bank for a second time on Saturday afternoon as they faced Lincoln City in the second round of this season's Emirates FA Cup competition.
The Blues were without Jamie Devitt, who had pulled out of the midweek game at Notts County with a calf problem, but that brought Kelvin Etuhu back into the starting line up.
Richie Bennett was also recalled, with Ashley Nadesan denied permission to play by parent club Fleetwood Town, and that left Carlisle one short on the bench with Danny Grainger and Tom Parkes also still sidelined.
A welcome addition to the teamsheet was Jason Kennedy, a player who had last played for the Cumbrians in a 3-3 away draw at Wycombe just over a year ago, and who was rewarded by the manager for his hard work along what has been a tough recovery trail by being named in the match day 17 today.
There were just 30 seconds on the clock when the Imps took the lead as they attacked in numbers down the left flank. Green rolled the ball out for a cross and that was perfect from Andrade as it bent past Sowerby and dipped over Adam Collin. Striker Matt Rhead was unmarked at the back post and he had the simple task of tapping his volley into the empty net.
Lincoln kept coming and they thought they'd doubled their advantage when Eardley took charge of a 28-yard free kick. He had the wall and the keeper well beaten, but it curled late and whipped past the upright.
It was all about the home side and another good flick from Rhead brought a touch which released Green inside the box. He had just one thing in mind and he forced a good save out of Collin as he sent a stinger at the top corner.
Carlisle weathered the early storm and they were almost back on terms when Yates held play up on the left flank. He brought Etuhu into it, who then found Slater, and his inside pass took Sowerby on the overlap. The cut back eventually came back to Slater and he was disappointed to see his thunderbolt rebound off the base of the post before being hooked away to safety.
United had to defend a quickly taken free kick which found Green in space, as the game ebbed and flowed, and the corner from the block had Rhead interested as he pushed his man away to create a yard. The header was on target but Collin was there to grasp it.
Bennett put a header wide following a run and cross from Jones midway through the half, but the game became scrappy as both sides suddenly struggled to make anything happen in the final third.
Carlisle almost caught Lincoln napping just past the half hour when Gillesphey ghosted into the box completely unmarked. Yates found him, but his cross hit a defender and spooned high to the back post. Sowerby sent it back at a good height but Gillesphey's header was denied by a fingertip save from Vickers.
Lincoln broke quickly from the corner and strong work from Green saw him steal possession inside the United area. Anderson called for it, as he arrived late, and a clean volley kept Collin rooted to the floor. The big stopper was relieved to see it edge past the post.
A cross across the face of goal from Sowerby in time added on for the half deserved better, and Yates had a shot blocked when he tried to get onto the loose pieces. That bounced clear to Jones and Vickers had to go full length to parry as the shot ripped through bodies and headed for the bottom corner.
Winger Jerry Yates failed to recover from a knock picked up in the first 45 minutes during the break and that brought youngster Liam McCarron into the fray.
Carlisle started the second half on the attack and a high delivery from Slater brought Vickers into no man's land. Stranded, he wiped his brow as Bennett missed the header which would have taken the ball towards an unguarded net.
A first time cross from McCarron followed, as he was found by Hope, but it was too close to Vickers and he gobbled it up. McCarron earned his side a corner as he came forward again, and that eventually came to Hope as the away side kept the ball alive. Vickers did well to save, as he saw it very late, and Frecklington stepped in to tidy things up.
The Imps attacked in numbers as they settled into a second half stride and Andrade caused problems as he pulled wide. His fierce cross was just an inch away from being headed home by Rhead.
Eardley then had a shot deflected wide as he supported the forwards, and Frecklington had two bites of the cherry as he volleyed from the initial delivery. It came right back at him, and his second effort was also stopped in its tracks.
Collin was in fine form for United once again when Frecklington was first to a bouncing ball just 10 yards out. It was a cruncher, but the keeper got two hands to it to beat it away.
Lincoln should have wrapped up their progression on 74 minutes when Frecklington was allowed to run clear as a corner delivery came in. At close range, and with plenty of time on his hands, he got his bearings wrong and sent a poor volley into the night sky.
Things started to grow tense, with just one goal between the teams, and a slip from Gerrard inside the opposition half allowed Akinde to break at pace. He won a corner, when his shot was blocked, but Anderson was wasteful as he hung out a leg to send it into the stands.
Bennett rifled a long range effort past the angle of post and bar as the clock ticked down, but it was Lincoln who made sure of their victory with five minutes left to play when Andrade bullied Sowerby off the ball before going on a devastating run.
His cross was superb, and substitute John Akinde bagged his seventh of the season to book a place for his team in Monday night’s money-spinning third round draw.
Lincoln City - Rhead (1), Akinde (86)
Lincoln City - Vickers, Shackell, Pett, Frecklington (O'Connor 78), Rhead (Akinde 63), Green (McCartan 63), Andrade, Toffolo, Bostwick, Eardley, Anderson. Subs - Slocombe, Gordon, Wharton, Mensah.
Carlisle United - Collin, Sowerby, Liddle, Gerrard, Gillesphey, Yates (McCarron 46), Jones, Etuhu, Slater (Campbell 72), Hope, Bennett. Subs - Gray, Kennedy, Glendon, Adewusi.
Referee - Mr Dean Whitestone
Attendance - 6,438 (228 away fans)