Horndean were given a lesson in finishing as their missed chances proved crucial in a 3-1 loss to Hamble.
Both sides had early chances before a stop in play for an injury to Hamble’s Rhys Evans, who was taken off on a stretcher.
As play resumed, the visitors shook their hosts by taking the lead when Jamie Barrow was given the space he needed to thump home from close range.
The Deans’ response was immediate and a fine move left Lloyd O’Neill to free Nathan Paxton, who was denied a leveller by Ryan Greenway.
O’Neill then created an even better chance for Louis Castles who cut a path across the edge of the area before firing into the arms of Greenway.
Just before the interval, the visitors punished Horndean for wasting their chances as a fine run and cross by ex-Pompey youngster Nick Watts and a powerful finish from Barrow.
In an effort to add more punch to his lacklustre strikeforce, Horndean boss Dave Carter brought on Chamal Fenelon.
But after the striker went close, only a save from Harding denied Hamble from making it 3-0.
But the Deans keeper could do nothing about Josh Oxlade’s shot from six yards as the visitors did increase the lead.
Late on, Dan Hayes pulled a goal back but that was as good as it got for Horndean, who were left to rue their missed chances.
Boss Carter said: ‘We weren’t at the races and it wasn’t suprising we ended up not getting anything.’
Wessex League premier division
HORNDEAN 1 (Hayes)
GE HAMBLE 3 (Barrow 2, Oxlade)
Horndean: Harding, Ayres, Warren, Cansfield, Chapman, Castles, Spurway, Hayes, Woodward, Paxton, O’Neill. Subs: Fenelon, Stanbridge, Warren, Purkins, Chatfield.