Jim Bentley admitted his Morecambe side were beaten by the better team as they exited the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy at Fleetwood on Tuesday night.
The Shrimps were second best for long periods with goals from David Ball and Jimmy Ryan sending the Cod Army into the Northern Area final for the second time in three years.
Bentley said: “I’m gutted to be honest.
“It’s a competition we’ve done well to get this far in and we hoped we could come to another League 1 club and do what we’d done in the earlier rounds.
“But I don’t think the game got going for us to be honest.
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“I was pleased to get in at 0-0 at half-time and I thought in the second half with the wind we could put a bit more pressure on them.
“For the first five or 10 minutes we did do that and if we could have got the first goal we’d have got the momentum but we were beaten by the better side in the end.
“They’re miles ahead of us in terms of where they are with the division they’re in and the players they’ve got.
“I think it was the all-important first goal that was the killer.
“They got that and we pushed on to get the equaliser and left gaps and we made a mistake which cost us the second.
“It could have been our different story if we got ourselves in front but we didn’t threaten that much.”