Aaron Wilbraham's late strike wasn't enough to gain points as Dale lost out narrowly to league leaders Coventry City.
The visitors went in front on four minutes through Michael Rose.
A short corner was played to Liam Walsh. The midfielder’s cross into the area was misjudged by Robert Sánchez, allowing the defender to head the league leaders ahead.
There were big appeals for handball from the home side shortly after. Kwadwo Baah’s cross into the area found the head of Paul McShane.
His effort at goal struck the arm of a Coventry defender, though the referee waved away the protests.
Ian Henderson brought the best out of Marko Marosi between the Sky Blues’ sticks.
The Dale ever present’s instinctive flick from a Rhys Norrington-Davies cross was brilliantly saved down low from the Slovakian stopper.
The visitors came close to a second on the half hour mark. Matty Godden’s strike required a last-ditch block from Eoghan O’Connell, which the Irishman pulled off to perfection.
O’Connell received a heavy knock just before the interval, with Jim McNulty starting the second half in his stead.
Sánchez kept the deficit at one with a superb save to deny a Matty Godden header on 60 minutes.
The second came with 20 minutes left. Former Dale man Jamie Allen’s through ball allowed Matty Godden to fire the visitors 2-0 ahead.
Dale hit back with an instant reply. Substitute Aaron Wilbraham brought down a ball over the top before poking it past Marosi for a late lifeline.
The home side were committed to grabbing the equaliser. Late chances for Matty Done and Paul McShane went wide of the mark.
Despite a strong showing from Dale, the Sky Blues left the Crown Oil Arena with all three points.