Worthing's unbeaten start to the new season was brought to an end by Margate this afternoon.
Joseph Taylor got the only goal as Gate were 1-0 winners over ten-man Worthing in the Bostik League Premier Division encounter at Woodside Road.
Worthing, who had not tasted defeat in any of their opening seven matches in all competitions, had centre-half Aarran Racine sent off after collecting a second yellow card in the matter of minutes with 25 minutes to play.
Taylor nodded home Lee Prescott's delivery from the resulting free-kick as Margate took all three points.
Substitute Ollie Pearce saw his spot-kick strike a post and go wide after David Ajiboye had been brought down as the home side looked to salvage something in the closing stages, capping what proved to be a frustrating afternoon for Adam Hinshelwood's troops, who dropped down to three places to fifth following a first league loss.
Worthing made five changes from the team won at Leatherhead in the League Cup last time out with Darren Budd, Sam Rents, Callum Kealy, Danny Barker and Alex Parsons coming in for Ricky Aguiar, Rhyle Ovenden, Ross Edwards, Joe Clarke and Ollie Pearce.
Former Swansea City, Bristol City, Middlesbrough Reading and Brighton striker Leroy Lita was on the bench for Margate.
Callum Kealy looked bright from the outset and had the home side's first opening inside three minutes. Defender Thomas Wynter pulled up injured but Worthing continued playing with Kealy's goalbound effort blocked by Thomas Mills.
Things fell flat after that early opening and neither side created any other chances of note for a sustained period.
Worthing were looking for a moment to spark them in to life and striker David Ajiboye nearly provided that three minutes before the break. In-form Ajiboye picked up the ball on the halfway line, breezed past three players but saw his attempted pull back hacked away.
Substitute Sidney Sollis, introduced on 40 minutes, gave the visitors a real attacking threat. Sollis was sent racing away a minute prior to the interval only for his left-foot strike to be stopped by Lucas Covolan.
Margate finished the half stronger and substitute Sollis' shot was blocked after Worthing failed to clear a corner as the visitors fired another warning.
Worthing came out with a bit more purpose after the restart, going close through frontman Kealy on 52 minutes. The ball fell kindly in to the path of Kealy who was in on goal but goalkeeper Henry Newcombe was equal to his initial effort then the Australian's cross was cleared.
Things turned in Margate's favour over a matter of minutes just after the hour. Centre-back Aarran Racine received his second yellow in as many minutes for a challenge on George Brown and the home side were forced to play the final 25 minutes with ten men.
From the resulting free-kick, Joseph Taylor was on hand to nod home Lee Prescott's delivery to leave Worthing with it all to do.
Worthing were then gifted the chance to drag themselves level 12 minutes from time. Ajiboye pounced on indecision between substitute Ben Stuart and goalkeeper Newcombe before being hauled down in the area with a spot-kick awarded.
Substitute Ollie Pearce stepped up but his penalty struck to post and went wide.
Pearce tried to make up for his miss from the spot, going close with a header and a late effort, which was kept out by the foot of Newcombe, as Worthing suffered a first defeat this season
WORTHING: Covolan; Colbran, Racine, Rents; Parsons, Budd, Barker, Crane; Starkey, Ajiboye; Kealy. Subs: Miles (Starkey, 67) Ovenden, Clarke (Rents, 79), Aguiar, Pearce (Kealy, 61).
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