Match ends, Brighton and Hove Albion 0, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1.
Brighton slipped to their third straight home Championship defeat after defender Connor Goldson's own goal proved enough to give Wolves victory.
James Wilson twice went close for the hosts before Goldson diverted the ball into his own net on 32 minutes.
Bruno hit the bar before Carl Ikeme superbly saved Lewis Dunk's late header, leaving Wolves in 11th after their third straight Championship win.
After a 21-game unbeaten start, Brighton are now winless in six games.
Despite their recent poor run, the Seagulls looked the likelier scorers throughout, especially through on-loan Manchester United youngster Wilson.
After being thwarted by a desperate last-ditch challenge from Wolves defender Ethan Ebanks-Landell, Wilson then had a well-struck long-range volley tipped over by Ikeme.
Yet it was Wolves who went in front. In only his second start for the Seagulls following his summer move from Shrewsbury Town, and against his home town club, Wolverhampton-born Goldson stuck out his right leg to turn Jordan Graham's cross past home keeper David Stockdale.
It was a similar pattern after the break as Wilson's low right-foot shot was well held at the near post by Wolves keeper Ikeme before centre-half Dunk ballooned over.
But, with Ebanks-Landell and captain Danny Batth prominent in defence, Wolves held firm to record only their second away league win at Brighton - their first since a 1-0 victory at the Withdean Stadium in September 2004.
Selection issues at the Amex
Brighton were missing their on-loan Wolves winger Rajiv van La Parra because the Dutchman was not given permission to play against his parent club.
Icelandic midfielder Bjorn Sigurdarson came on as a second-half substitute for the visitors, his first Wolves appearance in just over two years.
Wolves opted not to use Grant Holt, who is now back at Wigan Athletic. The 34-year-old striker returned a few days before his two-month loan at Molineux was due to expire on 2 January.
Brighton boss Chris Hughton:
"We need to find a way to get goals. Defensive errors have given teams a head start in the last two games and they've gone on to protect a lead.
"At the minute things are not going our way, whereas earlier in the season it was.
"We must keep motivated, remember how well the players have done and go again. We're unbeaten away from home and are pleased we have a gap until our next two league games which are both away."
Wolves head coach Kenny Jackett told BBC WM 95.6:
"We've had some physically stronger players come into the team, which does reflect the division and we've been working more off the ball than on it.
"The lads played with a lot character. This was necessary to negate a very good Brighton side, who deserve to be where they are. We did well to cope with them.
"The top five all deserve to be up there. They are there for a reason. Ipswich are coming through very strongly but the top five will take some shifting."
- 2BrunoBooked at 37mins
- 8CroftsSubstituted forHemedat 74'minutes
- 25ZamoraSubstituted forManuat 64'minutes
- 18IorfaBooked at 50mins
- 7HenrySubstituted forSigurdarsonat 67'minutes
- 24GrahamSubstituted forByrneat 87'minutes
- 10AfobeSubstituted forLe Fondreat 90+4'minutes
- 12J Wallace
- 29Le Fondre
- Chris Kavanagh
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Brighton and Hove Albion 0, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1.
Attempt missed. Beram Kayal (Brighton and Hove Albion) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Dale Stephens.
Attempt missed. James Wilson (Brighton and Hove Albion) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Tomer Hemed following a corner.
Attempt blocked. Tomer Hemed (Brighton and Hove Albion) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Lewis Dunk.
Corner, Brighton and Hove Albion. Conceded by Carl Ikeme.
Attempt saved. Lewis Dunk (Brighton and Hove Albion) header from the left side of the six yard box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Connor Goldson.
Substitution, Wolverhampton Wanderers. Adam Le Fondre replaces Benik Afobe.
Foul by Íñigo Calderón (Brighton and Hove Albion).
Benik Afobe (Wolverhampton Wanderers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Offside, Wolverhampton Wanderers. Conor Coady tries a through ball, but Björn Sigurdarson is caught offside.
Delay over. They are ready to continue.
Delay in match Carl Ikeme (Wolverhampton Wanderers) because of an injury.
Corner, Brighton and Hove Albion. Conceded by Nathan Byrne.
Attempt missed. Tomer Hemed (Brighton and Hove Albion) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the left.
Delay over. They are ready to continue.
Substitution, Wolverhampton Wanderers. Nathan Byrne replaces Jordan Graham.
Delay in match Jordan Graham (Wolverhampton Wanderers) because of an injury.
Corner, Brighton and Hove Albion. Conceded by Matt Doherty.
Bruno (Brighton and Hove Albion) hits the bar with a right footed shot from outside the box. Assisted by Jamie Murphy.