Hull City’s winless streak in the Championship was extended to nine matches and Nigel Adkins’s side remain in the relegation zone.
The Tigers chief said: “I’ve got to keep leading from the front and trying to get the best from my players.
“Against a good Preston side, we’ve come away from home, started well, nullified a lot of strengths they have, put the ball in the right areas and scored a great goal. The big turning point for me was just before half-time when the referee wrongly gives the decision to award a penalty.
“It’s not a penalty and the linesman is closest to it. It’s hard for the referee to see it, so how can you give the decision?
“The linesman believes it’s not a penalty, the referee’s not even spoken to him. For me, it’s changed the whole complexion of the game.”
Counterpart Alex Neil praised Preston’s resilience as they ground out a hard-fought win.
Greg Cunningham’s header and Alan Browne’s penalty saw Preston come from behind after Jarrod Bowen had given Hull the lead, moving the hosts to within two points of the play-off places.
Neil accepted North End were far from at their best, but felt they showed character to battle back to claim the three points.
He said: “The good thing that we have as a team and a club is our resilience. We never give in. They got the first goal and lesser teams give up to an extent. We didn’t do that.”
Hull took the lead after 29 minutes as a slick move set Bowen free and his strike from the edge of the area deflected off Cunningham and beyond Declan Rudd.
Preston responded quickly and were level after 36 minutes. Paul Gallagher whipped in a corner from the right and defender Cunningham powered a header from 12 yards back across goal into the far corner.
Neil’s side were ahead in first-half stoppage-time. Billy Bodin, making his home debut, had a fierce effort pushed away by Allan McGregor before he burst forward again and was adjudged to have been brought down in the area by Fraizer Campbell.
Browne stepped up and slotted straight down the middle to put Preston in front at the break.
It was all one-way traffic in the second half as Preston attacked.
Preston North End: Rudd, Fisher, Clarke, Huntington, Cunningham, Pearson (Harrop 76), Gallagher (Johnson 70), Bodin, Browne, Barkhuizen, Robinson (Moult 79). Unused substitutes: Horgan, Spurr, Maxwell, Earl.
Hull City: McGregor, Aina, Hector, MacDonald, Clark, Bowen, Meyler (Evandro 69), Larsson, Irvine, Campbell (Wilson 69), Dicko (Keane 74). Unused substitutes: Marshall, Diomande, Tomori, Stewart.
Referee: S Martin (Staffs).