Town could not prevent FC United of Manchester recording a seventh straight home win as The Red Rebels came from a goal down to collect all three points at Broadhurst Park.
Jack Vann headed Town into a half time lead, but Craig Lindfield struck four minutes after the restart to level.
Player Manager Tom Greaves scored with his head in the 83rd minute, and despite Town going close to levelling through Terry Kennedy and Liam Agnew, Greaves scored another as the contest entered stoppage time to seal the win.
There was still time for returning striker Simon Ainge to end his return with a goal though as striker claimed his 32nd league goal of 2017 from the spot after Josh Falkingham was brought down in the box.
Simon Weaver welcomed Ben Parker back to the starting line-up following almost two months out with injury, while Mark Beck made his first Town start, Ainge was named on the bench.
Josh Falkingham was the first to register a shot on goal as the midfielder played a one-two with Beck on the edge of the box, but saw Lloyd Allinson beat away his long range strike.
Town went close to scoring another spectacular effort four minutes later, but this time Allinson denied George Thomson’s top corner bound attempt.
After Town’s early efforts, the hosts had come back into the contest, though it was Weaver’s side who edged ahead just past the midway point of the first half as Vann headed Joe Leesley’s free kick in at the back post.
The Red Rebels almost levelled six minutes later as Scott Kay struck the base of the post after hitting a right wing pull back first time.
The hosts were desperate to level before the break, but some solid defending from Terry Kennedy and Warren Burrell sent Town into the break with a slender lead.
That lead lasted just four minutes of the second half as Tom Walker’s corner somehow ended up in the back of the net, with Lindfield appearing to get the final touch.
Losing the lead prompted the introduction of Ainge, but it was FCUM who continued to look the more dangerous as the contest was broken up by a series of fouls.
Town had to wait until ten minutes from time for their next opening as Ainge’s knock down found fellow substitute Ellis Hudson, but the winger’s finish was into the ground, then the arms of Allinson.
FC United Player/Manager Greaves then handed his side the lead with seven minutes to go bundling home a right wing corner from point blank range.
Terry Kennedy and Agnew went agonisingly close to levelling in the closing stages as Kennedy headed inches wide at the near post moments before Allinson denied Agnew from close range.
It was the hosts who would go on to collect all three points though as Greaves tapped home Connor McCarthy’s pull back to seal the three points.
There was still time for Ainge to end his return with a goal though as striker claimed his 32nd league goal of 2017 from the spot after Falkingham was brought down in the box.
Harrogate Town: Belshaw, Vann, Parker, Falkingham, Kennedy, Burrell, Thomson, Agnew, Beck (Hudson 77), Thewlis (Ainge 65), Leesley
Subs not used: Swain, Barr, Cracknell
Goals: Vann 26, Ainge 90+5(p)
Booked: Parker, Falkingham
FC United of Manchester: Allinson, Senior, Walker (Wisdom 86), Fagbola, Hughes, Corbett, Glynn, Kay, Greaves, Irwin (Palmer 83), Lindfield (McCarthy 89)
Subs not used: Baird, Jones
Goals: Lindfield 49, Greaves 83, 91
Booked: Hughes, Irwin
Referee: S Copeland