A below-par performance saw Lewes fall to a 2-0 defeat at Aveley, reports Tom Harper (pictures James Boyes)
Tony Russell named an unchanged side, with the Rooks knowing that a win may be enough to take them into the play-off places.
Lewes dominated possession early on, moving the ball quickly as they looked to stretch the Aveley back four, but were unable to call Jonathan North into any meaningful action.
The hosts were seeing less of the ball but always looked dangerous in the final third and created the first clear-cut chance of the game, the ball running through to Manny Ogunrinde in behind, who saw his effort well saved by Lewis Carey.
Ogunrinde went close again later in the half, dragging another presentable chance wide of the far post after being teed up by Garrett Kelly.
Aveley took the lead on 33 minutes, as a free-kick taken from inside their own half evaded everyone before falling to the unmarked George Sykes to finish past Carey and into the bottom corner.
Lewes had their first attempt on goal just before half-time, a Jamie Mascoll free-kick being comfortably helped over the bar by North.
The hosts made a bright start to the second half and were handed a good chance to double their lead within minutes of the restart, as Kenny Aileru was tripped in the penalty area.
Aileru took the spot-kick himself, but saw his effort well saved by Carey low down to his right.
Aveley didn’t have to wait much longer to double their lead though, as Oli Coker fired past Carey from the edge of the area after 55 minutes, with the goal allowed to stand despite what appeared to be a foul on Alfie Young in the build-up.
The hosts then set about managing the remainder of the game, slowing the play down at every opportunity and ensuring Lewes were unable to build up any real spell of pressure as the half progressed.
The Rooks did call North into action heading into the final 20 minutes, with the goalkeeper making smart saves to keep out a Mascoll free-kick and then turn a curling Ryan Gondoh effort round the post.
Lewes were also boosted by the introduction of Razz Coleman De-Graft from the bench late on, but were unable to pull a goal back and set up a tense finale, with Aveley holding on relatively comfortably to record an impressive three points.
The Rooks will hope to return to winning ways when they welcome Billericay Town to the Pan on Saturday, kick-off at 3pm.
Aveley: North, Ring, Stephen, Odelusi, Scott, Gibbs, Ogunrinde (Vaivada 74), Kelly, Sykes (Fawole 83), Coker, Aileru.
Unused Subs: Nzengo, Dicks, Shabani.
Lewes: Carey, Renee, Mascoll, Salmon (De-Graft 76), Champion, Young, Pritchard (Olukoga 53), Hyde, Moore, Gondoh, Taylor.
Unused Subs: Tamplin, Murrell-Williamson.
Booked: Pritchard, Moore, Taylor.
Attendance: 383 (approximately 40 Rooks)