Ten-man Lewes fell to a third consecutive defeat on a rainy, windy night at the Pan, losing 3-0 to promotion-chasing Billericay Town.
Tony Russell made two changes to the side that lost 3-0 at Wingate & Finchley in their previous game, with Ayo Olukoga and Kieran Murtagh replacing Marcus Sablier and Ola Ogunwamide in the starting line-up.
These tweaks to the team saw Murtagh start up front and Olukoga slot into midfield, with Chris Whelpdale moving further forward to support Murtagh.
The first chance of the game fell to the visitors, who saw Alfie Cerulli drag his effort wide of the far post after good build-up play down the left.
Lewes responded to this by enjoying the better of the next 20 minutes, moving the ball well without creating anything clear-cut.
Billericay took the lead in bizarre circumstances on 27 minutes, as a mis-hit Jake Elliott pass-back from almost on the touchline flew past Nathan Harvey and into the bottom corner to stun everyone in the crowd.
Lewes nearly equalised immediately, a ball in from the right only being cleared as far as Ryan Gondoh, whose powerful strike was deflected just over the bar.
The conditions were making it tough for both teams, but Billericay began to take control towards the end of the half, with Ruben Soares narrowly missing the target, before teeing up Ollie Peters to shoot wide with only Harvey to beat.
The visitors doubled their lead two minutes before the break, Frankie Merrifield latching onto a through-ball and slotting the ball past Harvey.
Lewes’ task was made even more difficult on the stroke of half-time, as Ronnie Vint was shown a straight red card for a rash challenge on Soares, who was booked himself for his part in the altercation that followed.
Billericay looked to make the most of their numerical advantage within minutes of the restart, Cerulli drawing a superb save from Harvey with a powerful strike from inside the area.
To their credit, Lewes stayed in the game and did their best to pull a goal back, a Sanchez Ming cut-back from the right going just behind Murtagh and Whelpdale.
The better chances unsurprisingly fell to the visitors though, with Harvey called into action again to deny Merrifield.
There was nothing he could do to prevent Adam Leathers making it 3-0 on the hour, his well-struck volley taking a deflection on its way past the keeper and into the back of the net.
The Rooks continued to battle in the dismal conditions, with Whelpdale seeing a goal-bound effort blocked by Matt Johnson and substitute Marcus Sablier’s deflected strike going just wide of the near post.
Billericay could have added to their lead late on, a Cerulli piledriver from the edge of the area squirming under Harvey and going just wide, before Leathers sent a shot into the side-netting.
This would be the last meaningful action of the game, with Lewes now hoping for a response at Hastings United on Saturday, kick-off at 3pm.
Lewes: Harvey, Ming, Vint, Elliott, Oguntayo, Penney, Olukoga, Whelpdale, Gondoh (Tamplin 67), Lumbombo-Kalala (Sablier 57), Murtagh (Wood 86).
Unused Sub: Ogunwamide.
Sent off: Vint.
Billericay Town: Wilks, Wind, Porter, Johnson, Bender, Cerulli, Leathers (Ramsay 79), Peters, Henshaw, Soares (Stevenson 62), Merrifield (Asamoah 74).
Unused Subs: Davis, Lamacq.
Booked: Soares, Johnson.