A stoppage-time penalty from Courtney Baker-Richardson secured Crewe a dramatic 1-0 win over fellow promotion challengers Notts County.
Baker-Richardson fired home with 97 minutes on the clock after County winger Jodi Jones was adjudged to have handled Ryan Cooney’s volley in the visiting box.
Defences were on top for most at Gresty Road, although the Magpies controlled much of the second period until they were hit by the late sucker punch.
In the opening minutes County defender Aden Baldwin timed a tackle to perfection to dispossess Shilow Tracey as the attacker burst clear inside the box. But when Baldwin misjudged the flight of a through ball Baker-Richardson was offered a sight of goal, only to drag his effort wide of the far post.
The Magpies took their time getting together as an attacking force and when Crewe skipper Luke Offord was caught in possession, Macauley Langstaff was put clear, but keeper Harvey Davies came off his line to make a save.
As the first half ended Baker-Richardson headed a difficult chance over at the far post after Sam Slocombe palmed away a free-kick from Joe White.
After the restart, Davies had to push a clearing header from team-mate Connor O’Riordan around the post.
County stepped up a gear and Jones stabbed the ball wide after Aaron Nemane drove an cross to the near post. Jones then went close to picking out the bottom corner with a low drive and Langstaff curled a left-footed around the far post.
David McGoldrick was thwarted by a last-ditch tackle by O’Riordan and Cooney’s loft at the other end of the pitch dropped onto the roof of the net.