Bob Paine rued ‘a bad day’ as East Preston were beaten 5-0 at home by Newhaven in the Premier Division on Saturday.
Lee Robinson helped himself to a hat-trick, giving him 59 goals for the season in all competitions.
EP were down to ten-men for the last 30 minutes after Nathan Da Costa was sent off after picking up two yellow cards.
The home side were already 3-0 down by that time and conceded a further two goals.
East Preston boss Paine said: “It was a bad day for us.
“We did our best but it wasn’t good enough on the day although I think the score-line flattered them a little bit as it was a scrappy game.
“Within the group the spirit is still good and we will stick together and work even harder.”
Robinson’s first goal came after 26 minutes when he went through one-on-one with George Bentley and calmly slotted past the EP goalkeeper.
The second goal came on 42 minutes when poor marking from a corner saw David Altendorff volley home.
The third goal three minutes later was a carbon copy of the first, with Robinson going through one-on-one with the same result.
The second-half was made much more difficult for the home side when Da Costa was sent off on the hour.
With a man short EP were under pressure and conceded the fourth goal when Kyle Woolven stabbed home.
The scoring was completed on 76 minutes when Josh Etherington was adjudged to have fouled in the box and Robinson calmly scored from the spot for his third goal and his sides fifth.
Paine’s side travel to Saltdean United on Saturday.
EP: Bentley, Da Costa, Beaney, Slaughter, Lyne, Etherington, Rafferty (Pattenden 53), Jenkins, Heryet (Tilley 64), Barnes (Brodie 79), Huet. Unused: Gilbey, Collins.