Frustrated manager Paul Postlethwaite blamed “shocking” decision making as Heanor Town slumped to a second successive defeat.
The Lions went down to a goal in each half at high-flying Highgate, but Postlethwaite said Heanor should have won the match.
“We should have beaten them. It should have been dead and buried in the first half — and they are pushing for promotion,” said Postlethwaite.
“As well and as hard as we have worked — and I am sure everyone appreciates that from the lads — we have not had enough quality in front of goal.
“We had the chances and the opportunity to create chances, but our decision making in both boxes and both final thirds was nothing short of shocking.”
The Lions were the better team in the first half on a heavy pitch and Jamie Sleigh and Alex Brown might have given them the lead before James Wilcock’s cross from the right-wing looped over Lions’ keeper Wayne White and into the corner of the net.
Sam Vickers, Danny Gordon and Nick Hall had chances to level, but Highgate dominated the second period and secured victory on the hour when Richard Batchelor struck from close range.
The 2-0 defeat left the Lions eighth in the Midland League Premier Division, four places behind Highgate.
Postlethwaite, who praised Highgate’s efforts to get the match on while many others were postponed because of the wet weather, added: “We have worked hard against a very good side. We have competed and battled, but if you make that many bad choices and errors you will not win football games.
“We had four or five decent chances in the first half. But how we have ended up with nil is not through bad luck, but through bad decisions and poor quality.
“Yes we were the better side in the first half, but goals change games.”
The manager said Heanor could do little about Highgate’s breakthrough goal, but was critical of the second the visitors conceded.
“For the second goal we gave them opportunites from our poor decisions,” he said. “We made opportunities to get back into the game, but didn’t take them or made the wrong decisions.”
On Saturday the Lions travel to leaders Bromsgrove Sporting, who have dropped just two points at home this season.