STRICKEN Rob Elliot looked like he wanted the ground to swallow him up after Saturday's goalkeeper howler.
The Charlton loanee stayed prostrate on the ground after he spilled a backpass and Notts County's Jason Lee pounced to score what turned out to be the winner.
It condemned Stanley to their ninth defeat in 13 league games - with just one win in all that - and it was a hard loss to take as it kept them perilously close to the dreaded drop zone.
And while Elliot led on the floor with his face hidden for a good few seconds, boss John Coleman looked like he wanted to do the same in the after-match press conference.
Everyone at the club is struggling to believe what is happening to the Reds this season.
After all the joy of last year's promotion, everyone keeps waiting for Stanley to pick up and make that long-awaited run to steer themselves clear of the bottom pack.
Every game it is a case of "this might be the one" but, as every hope seems to be raised, it is as quickly dashed as the League Two opponents just keep finding a way past the Reds - and leaving the players, management and fans well and truly floored.
Manager Coleman had pumped his side up labelling Notts County as a "must win" game and calling on both fans and his players to help make the FES a fortress again - as Stanley hadn't won at home since September 30.
Instead, he was bemoaning his side's 13th defeat in their 27 League Two games - and, just when he thought his side couldn't possibly make another bad mistake, then they blundered again leaving the manager close to tears.
"It is like a bad dream which just keeps recurring," said Coleman, whose side had taken just six points from a possible 39.
"It is driving me insane. I feel like crying again. We have absolutely dominated the first half and come in 2-1 down.
"You can be the best coach in the world, have the best players in front of you but if your goalkeeper makes a mistake like that, there is no legislating for it.
"I have to shoulder the blame. We have been let down again by our defence and it is happening quite regularly.
"Maybe I have been too loyal to them and put a bit too much trust in them. Now I think enough is enough.
"I need two or three defenders as the ones we have are blatantly not good enough."
Centre half Robbie Williams failed to clear the ball for the first goal which came on 10 minutes. A long ball forward by David Pike was headed down by the tricky Lee into the area. The ball crept through Williams' legs and poacher Lawrie Dudfield was there to pick up the pieces and curl the ball into the far corner of the net beyond Elliot.
Then, 10 minutes later, came the 'keeper error when Michael Welch's back header looked comfortable for Elliot but he dived on the ball and it somehow squirmed out of his hands to the waiting Lee and everyone could only watch as the ball trickled into the net.
In between, David Brown had given Stanley fans hope when he made it three goals in three games. The lively Rommy Boco's shot bounced in the area and the striker was there first to steer the ball between keeper Kevin Pilkington and the post.
Stanley hunted for the leveller but then the game erupted with new boy Alan Rogers certainly making sure he had a Stanley debut to remember.
After coming in at left back and looking composed, he turned from an asset into a liability on 72 minutes when he went in high and two-footed on Pipe on the wing.
Luckily, the experienced campaigner missed the defender completely but it was a horrific challenge and it was only a matter of time before the red card was displayed - Stanley's eighth of the season.
Pipe jumped up and confronted Rogers and he too was dismissed much to the anger of his manager Steve Thompson who was also sent to the stands after directing his fury at the ref.
"I can understand Alan putting the tackle in - I can understand his sentiment but he should be able to control his aggression. He fully deserved the red card," said Coleman.
Thompson agreed: "I care for my players and that was a career-threatening tackle. There is no malice in David and Alan should have known better."
It raised the temperature in what was a meeting of two sides with recent indifferent form, both desperately needing a pick-me-up.
Stanley wanted revenge after what was a knockout blow at Meadow Lane when County surged three goals ahead early on with only two late efforts giving the scoreline some respectability for Accrington.
Back then the Magpies were up challenging for automatic promotion but have since dropped down towards the mid-table without a win in four before Saturday.
And they started slowly with Stanley midfielder Rommy Boco, returning after a back injury which saw him sidelined in November, showing everyone what the Reds had been missing in the opening minutes.
He tested Pilkington with a 25-yard drive and the visiting defence struggled to cope with his pace. Rogers also showed hints of promise with a 30-yard blast which was just over in a good opening for the home side.
Then County launched their first attack and scored. Brown replied before the Magpies spearheaded attack No 2 - and scored again.
The visitors had no more first half chances while Brown missed a couple of Stanley opportunites - shooting straight into the 'keeper's arms from eight yards and then, when put clean through by Andy Todd, he couldn't make a good connection with the ball and Pilkington denied him again.
And, at the start of the second half, the Magpies shot-stopper was once more in action, tipping over a Rogers left wing looping effort as Stanley strove for the much-needed leveller.
However there were twists and turns in this game, with Elliot going some way to redeem himself by denying County defender Stephen Hunt and Lee while Dudfield's wayward shooting saved the Reds after the break.
The home side were enjoying good spells of pressure with corners and free kicks around the box but they just couldn't find a way through with winger Todd not his usual self and Shaun Whalley keeping the ball too long and running up against an eventual brick wall.
Then came the double dismissal and that seemed to knock the stuffing out of both sides.
Dudfield could have made it more clear cut for County with a chance six minutes from time but he chose to shoot than pass to the waiting Lee and it went wide.
"In no way shape or form are Notts County better than us but they have taken six points off us," slammed Coleman. "We are now regularly getting beat by teams who are not better than us and they don't have to do anything to score against us - we gift them goals."