Colchester United held on to frustrate struggling Hartlepool United and earn a point despite playing with 10 men for nearly 50 minutes at Victoria Park.
The hosts needed to win to close the eight-point gap between the sides, but they were unable to find a breakthrough despite the U's having Jabo Ibehre sent off for a lunge on Neil Austin.
Pools dominated possession and piled forward after the interval.
But the closest they came was when a 20-yard James Poole volley hit the bar.
Pools are third from bottom in League One, seven points from safety.
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Colchester United manager Joe Dunne told BBC Essex:
"I'll be appealing it (Jabo Ibehre's red card) straight away.
"I felt It was a fair challenge, there was no studs showing when he's actually made the tackle.
"I think everybody around there felt the red was harsh, maybe the angle the referee had made it difficult, I thought he had a difficult game tonight."
"As a team we defended exceptionally well, the discipline and attitude was great especially in the second half.
"We came away with a lot of credit, overall, it's a wonderful point."
Hartlepool United 01 Flinders 02 Austin 05 Collins 06 Horwood 18 Baldwin (Luscombe - 31' ) 29 Hartley 03 Humphreys Booked 07 Franks (Howard - 80' ) 08 Walton Booked (Sweeney - 90' ) 10 Poole 36 Wyke Substitutes 31 McHugh 22 Holden 11 Monkhouse 14 Luscombe 15 Sweeney 33 James 39 Howard Colchester United 44 Walker 03 Garmston 04 Okuonghae 18 Eastman 20 Wilson Booked 41 Clifford (White - 81' ) 14 Bond 39 Porter Booked (Thompson - 74' ) 09 Morrison Booked (Ladapo - 66' ) 17 Ibehre Dismissed 21 Massey Substitutes 01 Cousins 02 Wright 25 White 40 Thompson 15 Bean 19 Ladapo 33 Compton
Ref: Geoff Eltrigham