Hartlepool United fell to a 2-0 defeat at Crewe Alexandra after an early red card for Keith Curle's side.
Pools started the game brightly, with Dan Kemp slamming a free-kick into the side-netting, but their good work was undone after 13 minutes.
Jamie Sterry's late challenge saw the referee brandish a red card, much to the shock of most within the ground.
The dismissal saw Pools forced into an early change, and all their momentum was lost.
Finney's volley wide was a rare highlight in the first half, with all the pressure coming from the hosts.
Crewe took the lead in the 30th minute through Ainley after good work from Agyei in the box. Minutes later, they doubled their lead through Finnigan's volley.
A triple change at half-time saw Pools more on the front foot, but little came in the way of chances for either side.
Dan Dodds had a go from distance, while Jennings and Kiernan got into good positions, but the early red card and quickfire double were too much for Keith Curle's side.
They now turn their attention to Saturday and a vital trip to AFC Wimbledon.
Pools XI: Stolarcyzk; Sterry, Dodds, Foran, Pruti, Ferguson; Featherstone (Niang 46), Kemp (Grey 81), Finney (Jennings 46); Umerah (Kiernan 46), Hamilton (Sylla 15)
Unused: Killip, Dolan