Crewe loanee Thierry Audel replaced Karl Ledsham as Imps' boss Gary Simpson switched things around formation-wise for this Vanarama Conference fixture against Wrexham at Sincil Bank Stadium.
Conditions were mild but blustery as referee Richard Wigglesworth led the two teams out of the tunnel and one the pre-match formalities were done and dusted play got underway with City starting with Audel joining Nat Brown and Tom Anderson in a back three as Tom Miller and Sean Newton were given the chance to play in advanced full-back roles.
The Imps kicked off attacking the Bridge McFarland Stand and playing into a strong breeze were quickly on the offensive with Jordan Burrow testing Andy Coughlin with a low effort from 25 yards.
Wrexham's response saw Andy Bishop fire over after a Neil Ashton cross fell to him at the back post before things calmed down a bit as the clock ticked towards the 10 minute mark.
Wrexham won the first corner of the game with Miller forced to clear a Mark Carrington cross behind but Elliott Durrell's delivery sailed straight out of play for a goal-kick whilst at the other end Ben Tomlinson was denied by Coughlin at point-blank range following good play by Burrow and Miller.
The end-to-end start continued with Townsend punching a Durrell free-kick out for a corner which lead to nothing whilst for the Imps good work from Burrow saw him create space but Coughlin saved his effort at the second attempt.
In the 21st minute Delano Sam-Yorke shrugged off a challenge before forcing Coughlin to tip shot behind and when the corner was half-cleared, Arnaud Mendy saw his goal-bound volley held by Coughlin. Shortly afterwards Tomlinson was penalised for a push after Jon Nolan curled in a cross before Newton fired into the net.
City were made to pay for not making the most of their spell of pressure as, 10 minutes before the break, the visitors grabbed the lead. A quickly taken free-kick was played to Bishop who took his time before releasing Durrell who finished neatly past Townsend to edge his team in front.
The frustrations grew with Sam-Yorke picking up a 39th minute booking following an off-the-ball tussle with Blaine Hudson after Nolan played a wasteful ball straight through to Coughlin in the Wrexham goal.
A minute before half-time Tomlinson had a shot blocked by Hudson, with the Wrexham centre-back going into the break with a caution to his name following a trip on Nolan after the Imps cleared a Wrexham corner.
HT: IMPS 0 WREXHAM 1
Both teams emerged unchanged for the start of the second half, altough Audel returned with a numberless shirt, presumably due to a first half blood injury.
It was a quiet opening to the second period with a long Miller throw being gathered by Coughlin and a Harris free-kick which went straight at the City wall being the only action of note during the first nine minutes.
Wes York wasted the chance of a decent centre, firing a cross straight at Townsend as team mates advanced in support and the Wrexham man was then tripped by Anderson who was booked his troubles.
A double change in the 58th minute saw Marcus Marshall and Alan Power replace Sam-Yorke and Audel, although any impetus from this was curtailed when Hudson went down with a head injury bringing about a break in play.
As the game fast approached its final quarter, Tomlinson dragged a shot wide of the mark before the Imps forced a couple of corners with the second ending up seeing Brown pick up a knock.
With 20 minutes on the clock a sliced Anderson clearance lead to a corner which ended up seeing Jennings prod inches wide. City's response saw Tomlinson flick on for Power who was taken out by Ashton. A yellow card and free-kick was the outcome.
Tackles were starting to fly in with a couple of meaty Miller ones bringing the visiting dug out to its feet and when an 83rd minute Newton free-kick lead to a corner, City grabbed the leveller.
Substitute ALAN POWER was the man with the goal as, after ball stayed in the attacking third following the corner, Power picked up possession before fizzing in a low 25-yard drive which flew past Coughlin and into the bottom corner of the net.
Johnny Hunt replaced Elliott Durrell three minutes after this goal but City remained on the offensive with a dipping Tomlinson header being tipped over by Coughlin. Newton fired over after the corner came back to him.
Midway through four additional minutes, Newton was booked for a needless foul on Jennings