Youngster Ben Chapman was the standout performer for Gillingham as they bowed out of the Kent Senior Cup.
Chapman, known more for his midfield work, was picked to play right-back as the Gills attempted to reach the county cup final against Maidstone United on Tuesday night.
Gills coach Ben White was full of praise for 20-year-old Chapman, who has recently been playing on loan with Bostik League side Faversham Town.
White, taking charge from the sidelines as boss Steve Lovell watched from the stands, said: “I thought Ben Chapman had an excellent game.
“He has has gained different experiences playing in different environments (with Faversham) and that is important for his development.
“It was probably another step up from that in terms of levels and atmosphere but I thought he performed really well. I don’t think he has done himself any harm.”
If Gillingham were looking for positives from a penalty shoot-out defeat to the Stones, then there some to be found.
Alex Lacey captained the side and played 90 minutes as he works his way back from injury. There were also full games for several other players on the Gills periphery.
Tahvon Campbell made his first start, following a loan move from Forest Green, and he opened his account with a goal after just eight minutes.
Fans had been expecting to see youth striker Roman Campbell start upfront but when Tahvon Campbell made a quicker than expected recovery from illness, the senior pro got the nod.
Roman Campbell headed to Crabble instead, to play for his loan side Sittingbourne, in a friendly at Andy Hessenthaler’s Dover.
White was pleased with those individual plusses on Tuesday but felt the team selected should have done better.
Before the match boss Steve Lovell said they his team should win the game but it wasn’t to be.
Goals from Campbell and Elliott List were cancelled out and after finishing all-square at 2-2, the Stones won 4-2 on penalties.
“It’s disappointing to lose,” White said.
“It’s a lottery on penalties and it went Maidstone’s way.
“There are plusses in terms of a few individual performances and for players who needed it, against good opposition.
“They have been chucked together but as a team performance, in my opinion, I felt we could have done better.
“They are professionals, they train together every day, so they do know each other. From a collective point of view we expected to see more but there were some positive individual performances in there, which was good.”