Southwick Football Club boss John Kilgarriff admitted his side just fell apart in their 4-2 Southern Combination Division 1 defeat at Saltdean United last night.
Wickers were in cruise control and found themselves 2-0 ahead inside 30 minutes.
Andy McDowell slotted home a spot-kick on 20 minutes, before Sam Blundell netted his first Southwick goal ten minutes later.
The turning point came three minutes prior to the interval, as Jordan Peskett was caught in possession by Harry Eyre who went onto score.
Highly-fancied Saltdean introduced former Southwick striker Ryan McBride at half-time and he made all the difference.
His 14 minute hat-trick, which were all headed efforts, saw the home side open up a 4-2 lead with 28 minutes to play as they completed a remarkable turnaround.
Wickers were handed a lifeline ten minutes from time as they won a second penalty but McDowell missed this time as it finished 4-2.
Southwick boss Kilgarriff now wants to see an improvement from his side.
He said: “We’ve conceded eight goals in our first two league games and that’s not good enough.
“We were in absolute cruise control at 2-0 but then one silly mistake before the break cost us.
“They’ve got some real quality in their side but we gave some sloppy goals away and it was disappointing to lose out.”
SOUTHWICK: Gillard; Damario, Lipscombe, Petts, Peskett; Dunk, Smith, Shelley; Blundell, McDowell, Pretlove. Subs: Tucker (Peskett), Pressley (Pretlove), Lowe, Howard.
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