The Youth Team suffered a narrow defeat to Doncaster Rovers on Saturday, in the EFL Youth Alliance Cup.
After a quiet first-half which Dale edged, the home side took the lead shortly after the interval.
Dale fought hard to get back into the match, and deservedly levelled three minutes from time through James Neild.
However, just two minutes later, Doncaster regained the lead to snatch all three points in Dale’s penultimate Northern Group 6 match.
There were three changes from the midweek FA Youth Cup defeat, as Luke Matheson, James Neild and Louis White all started.
It was a first-half of few chances for both sides, with Dale creating more openings, although the home side had perhaps the best chance, when Brad Wade came out quickly to deny a one-on-one effort.
Dan Adshead found space on a couple of occasions in the final third, leading to shooting opportunities for him. Firstly, he dragged wide from just outside the area, before having a goalbound effort well blocked in first-half stoppage time.
Dale’s came closest in the opening period when Neil Kuemo’s left-wing cross was just an inch away from being turned home by Fabio Tavares, who couldn’t quite reach the inviting ball.
The home side broke the deadlock just three minutes into the second period, from a quickly taken free-kick. They worked the ball into the area from the left side, where Keegan Townrow slotted home from close range.
Tavares was inches away from connecting with another Kuemo cross four minutes after Dale had conceded, as they began to pile on the pressure in search of an equaliser.
Substitute Lewis Bradley almost made an instant impact off the bench, when he almost reached a Neild through ball ahead of the goalkeeper, who fouled Kuemo just outside the area as he raced out of his goal.
Morley’s resulting free-kick came to nothing, but Bradley was involved again when he saw his shot turned behind at the near post after being found by Adshead.
Morley supplied Kuemo on two occasions inside the final ten minutes, but the Dale forward couldn’t find a way to goal, seeing a shot deflected wide and another trickle the wrong side of the post.
Dale’s pressure looked to have paid off three minutes from time when they found the equaliser. Matheson’s cross into the area at the second attempt dropped to Neild, who finished clinically into the bottom corner on the turn.
However, Dale’s hard work was undone just two minutes later, when the home side regained the lead. They won a contentious free-kick just inside the Dale half, which was sent into the area and nodded into the top corner by James Morris to snatch the win for Doncaster.