But Stevie Crawford’s players gave their manager absolutely everything as they aimed to turn the tables on the league leaders.
The score was level at the break before a stunning second half when six goals were shared between the two.
Sadly the home side scored four of those six goals to run out 4-2 winners.
Boss Crawford said: “Injuries and illness have hit us this week and I’ve had to focus a lot of my time on that.
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“That’s football at the moment and we can’t feel sorry for ourselves.
“But I was happy with the first half, we gave as good as we got.
“After losing the goal in the second half we went under a bit but there was a response at 3-0 to get it back to 3-1.
“If we hadn’t lost the goal to go 4-1 down, could we have put Cove under a bit more pressure?”
Danny Denholm had a couple of sights of goal during an even first-half.
The game sparked to life after the interval and it was the home side who took the lead when Leighton McIntosh finished.
Within minutes the visitors were two goals behind, Mitch Megginson racing clear on goal and beating Campbell.
Blair Yule looked to have wrapped up the points when he made it 3-0 before East Fife threatened a comeback through Kieran Millar’s counter.
Robbie Leitch added a fourth for the home side to settle their nerves despite Millar adding another for the visitors.