Keith Hill bemoaned Rochdale's failure to repeat their first-half display after the interval in the 1-1 draw with Gillingham.
A defensive mix-up between Gills defender Leon Legge and goalkeeper Stuart Nelson paved the way for George Donnelly to fire Dale into a 12th-minute lead, and the visitors were let off the hook soon after when Bobby Grant nipped in between Joe Martin and Nelson but sent a close-range finish over the crossbar.
But Danny Kedwell headed in a second-half leveller, before Martin Allen's side were reduced to 10-men late on after Andy Frampton was dismissed.
Hill was disappointed with his side's second-half showing, but said: "I was over the moon with the way we controlled the first half. We kept possession and created opportunities and were full of energy.
"But for 20 minutes of the second half we looked as though we were going to fold.
"I'm going through an emotional rollercoaster and I found it difficult on the touchline watching us in that second half having seen us in such a comfortable, controlling position in the first half.
"We just had to see off that momentum the opposition came at us with in the second half, but we didn't and we looked like we could go under."