A professional performance saw Lewes return to winning ways with a comfortable 3-0 victory over VCD Athletic in front of an impressive crowd of 777 at the Pan reports Tom Harper.
Darren Freeman made one change to the side that lost 1-0 at home to Carshalton Athletic in their previous game, with Ronnie Conlon replacing Charlie Coppola in the starting line-up.
There were few chances of note during a cagey opening quarter of an hour, however the best of the opportunities that were created fell to the visitors, who saw Aymund El-Moyhalbel and Marc Gorbell miss the target from close range as they looked to take an early lead.
Lewes made the most of these let-offs by going ahead themselves with their first real chance of the game after 17 minutes, as Gus Sow finished from close range after Joe Mant in the VCD goal had only been able to parry a Jamie Brotherton effort.
Credit should also be given to referee Shaun Farrer, who played a good advantage in the build up after Bouwe Bosma had been fouled on the edge of the area before the ball found its way to Brotherton.
This goal gave the Rooks confidence, with Smith being denied by Mant after being played in by James Hammond, before Lloyd Cotton saw his far-post header from a Leon Redwood corner hit the bar minutes later as Lewes pushed for a second goal.
The Rooks were able to double their lead just before the half-hour through Smith, who converted a Steve Brinkhurst cross from close range after the right-back had latched onto a superb cross-field ball from Ronnie Conlon.
Lewes were in control for the remainder of the half and should have increased their lead just before the break, as substitute Marcus Elliott, introduced in place of the injured Jamie Brotherton, completely missed his kick after Conlon had picked him out at the far post with a low cross from the left.
The second half started in in the same way as the first, with neither side able to create any clear-cut opportunities, although Lewes were continuing to enjoy most of the possession.
The first chance of the half fell to Conlon with about 25 minutes remaining, as he ran onto a Smith flick-on but saw his effort from a tight angle saved by Mant at his near post.
The visitors had their first opportunity of the second half minutes later, with Winterton comfortably holding onto a long-range strike from El-Moyhalbel.
Lewes were continuing to look the more dangerous side going forward and saw Smith fire a Bosma cross from the right just over the bar, before Conlon hit the side-netting from a tight angle after Mant had forced him wide of goal soon after.
The Rooks were able to score a third goal and secure all three points after 77 minutes, as substitute Billy Medlock latched onto a through-ball from Conlon and took his time before calmly finishing past Mant from close range.
Lewes continued to push for more goals in the closing stages, with Smith being challenged by Mant as he looked to take the ball round him, with the goalkeeper then saving well from Elliott on the rebound.
The Rooks were unable to score the fourth goal their performance arguably deserved, but were able to celebrate an impressive three points that saw them move five points clear at the top of the Bostik South table, something that Ross was very proud of when he spoke post-match to Barry Collins.
Lewes will hope to build on this result when they travel to Molesey on Tuesday, kick-off at 7.45pm.
Lewes: Winterton, Brinkhurst, Redwood, Hammond (Medlock 65), Chappell, Cotton, Bosma, Sow (Lawson 46), Smith, Conlon, Brotherton (Elliott 35).
Unused Subs: George, Hurley.
VCD Athletic: Mant, Imudia, Awotwi, Baker, Gorbell, Smith, Adebayo (Jubrill 64), Gordon, Gyamfi (Bassey 75), Kamara, El-Moyhalbel.
Unused Subs: Adeyoola, Mfula, Cue.
Referee: Shaun Farrer