Sligo Rovers were comprehensively beaten 4-0 by Premier Division leaders Dundalk at Oriel Park on Friday night.
A hat-trick from John Mountney and a penalty from Pat Hoban moved Dundalk three points clear at the top of the table.
Rovers, who were without the injured trio of Dante Leverock, Johnny Dunleavy and Regan Donelon for this game, were caught cold straight from the kick-off when Mountney found the net in the opening minute.
After weathering some sustained Dundalk pressure, Rovers gradually found their way back into the game and matched Dundalk reasonably well for the remainder of the first-half.
However, Dundalk were awarded a penalty in the early moments of the second-half, which Hoban converted.
A defensive then allowed Mountney in to score his second – and the same player converted a second penalty in the closing quarter to make it 4-0 and bring Sligo Rovers unbeaten run to an end.
Elsewhere, Finn Harps were beaten 5-3 by Bohemians in a high-scoring game at Dalymount Park with former Rovers player Raff Cretaro among the Harps scorers.