Lewes finished their pre-season campaign with a 2-0 defeat at Ryman Premier side Burgess Hill Town on a warm afternoon in Mid Sussex reports Tom Harper.
With Stacey Freeman set to miss the start of the season after fracturing his draw in the win at Horsham YMCA on Tuesday, Darren Freeman gave a trialist a chance to impress alongside Alex Malins in the centre of defence and also handed a start to Matthew George, who signed for the Rooks this week after impressing on trial earlier in pre-season.
Lewes got off to a bright start, and saw plenty of the ball without really testing Josh James in the Burgess Hill goal.
The closest the Rooks came to turning their early possession into a lead saw Steve Brinkhurst have a long-range effort comfortably saved by James after a good passing move in midfield.
The hosts took the lead against the run of play after 13 minutes, as Jack Brivio was fouled by A Trialist inside the area and Dan Pearse sent Chris Winterton the wrong way from the resulting penalty.
Burgess Hill were the better side for the remainder of the first half, and came close to doubling their lead just before the break when Lee Harding sent a half-volley just wide of the post after being set up by Dan Thompson.
The hosts continued to see more of the ball at the start of the second half and were able to find a second goal after 57 minutes, as Lee Harding crossed from the left for Pat Harding to finish from close range.
Lewes came into the game more as the half progressed, and saw Josh Jones send a 25-yard free-kick against the outside of the post with James beaten.
The Rooks were handed a good opportunity to pull a goal back in the final 20 minutes, as Charlie Coppola was fouled in the area. Unfortunately for the travelling supporters, Alex Laing saw his spot-kick saved by James.
With both sides playing their opening league game of the season next week, the closing stages unsurprisingly saw few chances of note.
Lewes begin their Ryman Division One South campaign at Chipstead next Saturday, kick-off at 3pm.
Lewes: Winterton, Brinkhurst, George, Hammond, A Trialist (Gunn 60), Malins, Jones, Cotton, Dawes (B Trialist 60), Laing, Coppola.