Lancaster City boss Phil Brown said his players had done the club proud after their penalty shoot-out defeat to Chorley.
The Dolly Blues led twice in the Lancashire FA Challenge Trophy final before being pegged back in the 2-2 draw in normal time, losing 3-1 on spot kicks on Monday night.
Brown said: “It’s tough to take losing a cup final but I can take a load of positives from tonight.
“I thought the lads were outstanding. The team did everyone connected to the club proud, the supporters who turned out in numbers proud.
“It’s disappointing we’ve not won the game, whether it be on penalties or in normal time, but there is some solace in how we’ve implemented a game plan and more.”
City relished the underdog tag against a side two divisions above them, Zach Clark opening the scoring inside two minutes with Craig Carney also on target 90 seconds after Jake Cottrell had levelled things up late in the first half.
Darren Stephenson then scored a rebound after missing his initial spot kick on 74 minutes to take the game to penalties.
Brown said: “I said start on the front foot and let’s take it to them but I didn’t expect us to score from a set piece against Chorley in the first couple of minutes.
“I quite like us being the underdogs,even in the league, because we are quite effective at counter attacking.
“We’ve got some fit lads, we’ve got good players, some breakers and we can surge.
“I thought the game plan worked to an extent and we just didn’t quite get over the line.”
Brown had told his players to have no regrets at the final whistle and that was certainly the case as a few hundred City fans went home happy despite the result.
The Blues boss said: “We wanted to control our emotions which I think lets a lot of teams down in big games but I thought we did it.
“I told the lads to give it everything they’ve got because players dream of games like this. They had to leave it all on the pitch and not regret anything.
“Maybe the people who missed a penalty will be thinking ‘if only’ but they were outstanding tonight, every man.”