The Kiwi stood firm on a day where wickets fell regularly to take the hosts through to the end of play with Felix Organ (three not out)
Hampshire, who were returning to County Championship action for the first time since the opening week of June, made a solid start after being stuck in by a Surrey side without the injured England international Ollie Pope - and now New Zealander seamer Kyle Jamieson who was forced off with an injury just six overs into the match.
Despite gloomy skies, Hampshire saw out the first session for the loss of just Joe Weatherley and reached 62-1 at lunch.
Opener Tom Alsop, who had earlier been dropped by Jamie Overton on 17, failed to make the most of his good fortune and fell to Jordan Clark.
His exit brought new loan signing Nick Gubbins, joining from Middlesex, to the crease for Hampshire.
The left-hander, who will join on a permanent basis at the end of the season following the shock departure of Sam Northeast to Yorkshire on Friday, looked in fine touch with some fine shots.
But he soon fell for 17 to Overton attempting a cut-shot which he edged behind to the waiting Jamie Smith.
James Vince produced a typically pleasing but brief innings when Clarke got his revenge when he trapped the elegant right-hander lbw for 16.
Ian Holland continued his fine form at the top of the order with his third 50 of the campaign, but became Clark's third victim when he dragged onto his stumps for 58, reducing the home side to 155-5.
A fifty-run stand from Colin de Grandhomme and Lewis McManus took Hampshire past the 200-mark before Clark struck again when McManus was caught down the leg-side by Smith for 24.
Keith Barker was dismissed without scoring to hand 39-year-old Clarke his third wicket before play was called off for the day due to rain and bad light with Colin de Grandhomme unbeaten on 48 and Felix Organ on three.