Buckie Thistle boss Graeme Stewart was proud of his players after they gave Inverness Caley Thistle a scare in the Scottish Cup.
But the Jags boss admitted he thought his side could have won the second round tie.
Championship side Inverness ran out 3-2 winners at Victoria Park, but needed a late goal from Daniel MacKay to get the better of the Highland League outfit.
Having not played competitively since Boxing Day prior to last night and having only been allowed to return to training earlier this month, Stewart says his players did themselves proud.
He said: “I’m proud of the players, but I’m also really disappointed because I’m not into glorious failures.
“I’m really proud of them for the way we pushed Inverness when you take everything into account; not playing, not training, being part-time and losing three of our best players in the last week in Joe McCabe, Andy MacAskill and Scott Adams, I’m really proud of them.
“But I thought the game was there for us as well.
“I was thinking ‘let’s go and get the winner’ when we equalised, I genuinely thought we could.
“We put a gameplan out which we felt could cause them problems and we always felt Callum Murray could come on and do something with his pace, and his touch and finish were outstanding.
“I thought we could do that again, but I think the third goal is poor from our point of view.
“The ball shouldn’t come in and then we had a couple of chances to clear it, but we were probably unlucky as well with the ricochet.
“In the first 30 seconds after conceding we could have lost by four or five – but the character my lads showed was unbelievable.
“After falling behind to a Championship side in the first minute, to push them to the 94th minute, I am really proud of them.”
Buckie handed a debut to 19-year-old ex-Aberdeen midfielder Max Barry, but fell behind after 40 seconds.
MacKay marauded down the left wing before sending in a cross which dropped to James Keatings to finish off from 10 yards, but Buckie responded well and levelled on the quarter-hour mark.
Sam Urquhart’s inswinging corner from the left clipped the woodwork, but Lewis MacKinnon kept the ball in play on the right side and his cross was headed home by the unmarked Jack Murray from six yards.
Shortly before the half-hour mark, Inverness were back in front when Sean Welsh was given time 30 yards from goal and the midfielder fired a shot beyond keeper Daniel Bell.
But Buckie never gave up and, after a number of scrambles in the Caley Thistle box, they equalised again with six minutes left.
Sub Callum Murray got the better of defender Ryan Fyffe on the edge of the area and then produced a fine finish past Cameron Mackay.
But the score was only level for a minute, with MacKay pouncing to score from close range after Buckie had failed to clear their lines.
Inverness boss Neil McCann said: “I’m absolutely delighted, this was a tough game and Buckie put us under pressure.”