Nottingham Forest tasted defeat for only the second time at The City Ground this season as Preston came away with a 1-0 victory.
A Louis Moult goal early in the second half was enough for North End to take all the points after The Reds had seen plenty of chances go begging in the first half.
Forest started on the front foot and were looking slick in possession, with some neat passing in the final third play creating a couple of openings inside the first 20 minutes.
Joe Lolley's mazy run ended up with a tame effort from the in-form winger which was easy enough for Declan Rudd to gather in the Preston goal on five minutes, before Tendayi Darikwa flashed an effort wide on 14.
It took a superb last-ditch tackle from North End skipper Tom Clarke on 17 minutes to deny Matty Cash from getting an effort away on goal after the Forest man was played through on goal but was denied 10 yards out.
As the rain began to fall heavily, it made conditions difficult for both sides and the visitors nearly profited on 21 minutes as Jack Robinson lost his footing, allowing Tom Barkhuizen in on goal but Costel Pantilimon was equal to his effort and Darikwa was on hand to clear the loose ball.
Forest began to find their footing again and came close to finding the opening goal through Cash on 35. Lewis Grabban did well to take the ball down the right and find a cross which Cash met on the volley in front of goal, but his effort flashed inches wide of the right-hand post.
Another opportunity came and went for The Reds minutes later after some excellent forward play by Grabban. He was forced wide on the right but a superb nutmeg on the defender saw him bear down on goal only for his pass across goal to evade everyone in a red shirt.
Lolley was next to have an attempt on goal, coming from some patient and intricate build-up on the edge of the Preston box but his volley crashed into the side netting as Forest couldn't find the opening goal that their first-half play deserved.
The Reds were made to pay for those missed chances as Preston took the lead early on in the second half. A corner from the right-hand side wasn't dealt with by the Forest defence, Lukas Nmecha played the ball across goal and Moult was on hand to bundle the ball over the line.
Forest went on the attack to find the leveller, with Lolley's rasping effort just clearing the crossbar on 71 and substitute Daryl Murphy seeing a header tipped over by Rudd as it looked like it would drop just underneath the crossbar.
The Reds pressed and probed for the equaliser but the Preston defence held firm to keep Forest at bay as they left Trentside with all three points.
Forest: Pantilimon, Darikwa, Hefele, Robinson, Osborn (c), Yacob, Colback (Murphy 77'), Cash (Dias 64'), Carvalho, Lolley, Grabban
Unused subs: Steele, Guedioura, Janko, Ansarifard, Appiah
Booking: Yacob 87'
Preston: Rudd, Clarke (c), Huntington, Davies, Hughes, Gallagher, Johnson (Burke 90'), Barkhuizen, Browne, Barker (Nmecha 25'), Moult (Ledson 73')
Unused subs: Maxwell, Fisher, Storey, Woods
Goal: Moult 56'
Booking: Davies 74'
Referee: Stephen Martin
Attendance: 27,777 (1,247 away)