Steve Painter said the whole Broadbridge Heath contingent must shoulder the blame as Peacehaven & Telscombe offered them a ‘reality check’ on Saturday.
The Bears boss was quick to praise the home side as the Premier Division strugglers clinched just their third Premier Division win of the season with a 3-2 triumph.
It was an opportunity missed for Heath to make up ground on the top four who were all playing each other.
Painter admitted they could and should have been more than 3-0 down at half-time, which has given Heath, who had been mentioned as promotion contenders, a wake-up call.
He said: “To be fair to them as good as they were, we were bad, but that does not do them justice. If we had gone in at 5-0 down, it would not have been an injustice.
“They were that good and we were that poor. I thought that this season we had got past the Broadbridge Heath of old, where we beat the top sides and then - no disrespect - lose to the bottom sides.
“That’s not entirely fair as we had been on a really good run up until Saturday, but we do have that thing about us of just chucking in a bad one.
“I am not blaming any individual, but collectively we were poor and I include myself in that. I know I got things wrong and I blame myself as well as the players.
“It was a reality check for all of us and shows you cannot take any side lightly in this league.
“I put it down to the fact we were very, very poor on the day. Knowing us as I do, we will bounce back Saturday hopefully, but we cannot perform like we did in the first half against Wick.”
Don’t miss out on all the latest breaking news where you live.
Here are four ways you can be sure you’ll be amongst the first to know what’s going on.
1 Make this website your homepage
2 Like our Facebook page at facebook.com/pages/Sport-Sussex
3 Follow us on Twitter @SportSussex
4 Register with us by clicking on ‘sign in’ (top right corner). You can then receive our daily newsletter AND add your point of view to stories that you read here.
And do share with your family and friends - so they don’t miss out!