A controversial refereeing decision proved pivotal in the Hawks’ 1-0 Vanarama Conference South loss at Sutton United.
With the scores goalless in the early exchanges, striker Bradley Bubb was felled outside the area by home keeper Tom Lovelock, who received a yellow card from official John O’Brien instead of the red demanded by the visitors.
Sutton capitalised to net the game’s only goal 10 minutes before the break through substitute Jessy Reindorf.
Portchester were thrashed 5-0 on home soil by rivals Moneyfields in the Wessex League premier division.
A Steve Hutchings double and goals from George Way, Alfie Rutherford and Russell Stanley earned Moneys victory over 10-man Portchester, who had Craig Hardy sent off on the stroke of half-time.
Graham Lindsey’s goal earned Fareham Town their first point of the season in a 1-1 draw with Folland Sports.
The hosts got the new campaign up and running at the third time of asking, following defeats to Whitchurch United and Winchester City.
Elsewhere in the Wessex League premier division, Dan Hayes and Ellis Martin’s goals earned unbeaten Horndean a 2-2 draw with Newport.
Meanwhile, winless Bognor lost 2-1 in the Ryman League premier division despite Alex Parsons’ composed equaliser at Nyewood Lane.