Boreham Wood suffered a 1-0 loss away to National League favourites Leyton Orient, on Saturday.
The game looked to be heading for a 0-0 draw, until a 69th minute penalty was scored by Macauley Bonne.
Connor Smith came into the starting eleven in place of Justin Shaibu, and he sat behind strike duo Angelo Balanta and Josh Umerah.
Josh Koroma was lively from the start and he struck a shot on the turn in the box, after taking on Joe Widdowson’s cross, but it sailed wide.
Luke Garrard’s side thought they had taken the lead after eight minutes, when Balanta connected with Keiran Murtagh’s cross and tucked it past Dean Brill, but the linesman pulled him back for offside.
Golden boot favourite Bonne countered for the hosts down the left-wing, but David Stephens charged back and stole the ball from beneath his feet, with a vital interception.
The midfield trio were linking up well but had been unable to find a way through the Orient defence as far. Koroma chased away on the counter for Orient after the Wood’s latest attack and found Bonne, but his effort was blocked.
A superb cross from Ricky Shakes lofted over the Orient defence and onto the head of Umerah, but Brill had charged out to punch it clear. At the other end, Charlie Lee sent a vicious attempt over the bar from 20-yards.
With memories of his superb set-piece strike against Royston Town last season, Balanta stepped up and curled a free-kick from 30-yards at Brill, but it went inches over.
A loose ball dropped for Umerah on the left of the area, but he drilled it wide of the far post.
Orient returned for the second half with an increased attacking intent and Tom Champion had to reacted quickly to make a sliding challenge in the area, to intercept Dayton’s low cross.
Substitute Dan Happe then glanced a header across the face of goal, from a corner – as did Craig Clay shortly after.
The Wood began to regain a foothold in the game and Shakes fizzled an effort from the right-wing, that Brill had to be at his best to push wide.
Champion then went close from the subsequent corner, but he sent his header the wrong side of the left-post.
Making his first start in the league for Boreham Wood, Smith had impressed behind the strikers and curled a sweetly hit shot on target from the edge of the area, but Brill was able to tip it over the crossbar.
However, the hosts were gifted an excellent opportunity to take the lead shortly before the 70th minute, when Ricky Shakes brought down Koroma on the edge of the area. The referee adjudged the ball to have been just inside of the box and pointed to the spot.
The in-form Bonne stepped up and coolly sent Ellery Balcombe the wrong way to open the scoring.
The Wood continued to press for an equaliser in the final 20 minutes, but Orient defended strongly to see out the game.
The Wood: Balcombe, Woodards (Ilesanmi 80’), Ricketts ©, Stephens, Shakes, Champion, Umerah, Murtagh, Fyfield, Smith (Thomas 64’), Balanta (Parry 80’)
Subs not used: Burbidge, Ash
Leyton Orient: Brill, Widdowson, Coulson (Happe 49’), McAnuff ©, Clay, Bonne, Dayton (Lawless 87’), Judd, Koroma, Ekpieta, Lee (Alabi 87’)
Subs not used: Sargeant, Ling
Goals: Bonne 69’ (pen)
Attendance: 3,767 (96 away)