Joe Jacobson admitted he was gutted by his sending off – but thinks he and the team will be stronger for their play-off experience.
The 22-year-old saw red for a late lunge on Lawrie Wilson with Sean McConville following him in the fracas that ensued.
"I am gutted. I feel like I have let the boys down, the fans down and John (Coleman) and Jimmy (Bell) down.
"If I had not been sent off, Sean wouldn’t have got sent off so it’s one of those things.
"I have never been sent off in my career, I am not a dirty player and I do not lunge or go in two-footed and it is hard to take.
"I have got to learn to pick my times to make challenges though.
"It was a massive game, with a lot of pressure and I wish I hadn’t tried to make that challenge but unfortunately, that’s football.
"We will all learn from it. We are a young squad – if you look at Chelsea and Manchester United they have an old squad and the experience helps.
"But we have a great bunch of lads here and we will learn from it.
"We know, if we are in this position in the future, we have got to turn it in victories and get promotion and this experience will help us."
Stanley were on an unbeaten 11-game home run going into the game at the Crown Ground – with nine wins in that – and they had only been beaten at home three times in League Two all season.
And the full back admitted they expected to win last Friday and reach tomorrow’s final at Old Trafford.
"We just didn’t perform like we can and that’s the frustrating thing," he said.
"We like to get the ball down and pass it and create opportunities and we didn’t do it in either leg.
"In previous games, teams have turned up and set up to be hard to beat but we have got early goals, created chances and been brave and it didn’t work out for us over these two legs. They bullied us and it worked for them.
"Stevenage came with a game-plan. They are difficult to break down, they are big and strong and had two lively lads up front who caused us problems.
"It’s just so annoying that we had got ourselves into the play-offs and we didn’t really turn up in the first leg and we wanted to play at home and give it our best shot but it didn’t work out for us.
"Over the two legs, we simply weren’t good enough and it’s hard to take. They were the better team and deserved to get there."
While, in a few weeks, Jacobson and co will look back and believe finishing fifth and reaching the play-offs was a good achievement for Stanley, at the moment it is still hurting.
"Was it a great season? Our aim was promotion and we haven’t done it.
"We might have got into the play-offs against all odds but we didn’t want it to finish here.
"We wanted to to get into the play-off final and go up. We had a great chance and we wasted it so, at the moment, it is disappointment.
"We have got to pick ourselves up, forget it and come out stronger and go for promotion next season."