More woe for Crewe Alexandra after crashing to a 3-0 home defeat to second-bottom Colchester United at Gresty Road.
Following a scoreless opening half the visitors struck three times during a disastrous ten-minute spell, with Freddie Sears initially on target from Sanchez Watt’s delivery.
Substitute Rhys Healey soon added another before Watt effectively wrapped up proceedings midway through the second period.
It leaves the Railwaymen currently five points away from immediate safety following a seventh defeat in nine games.
Teenager Billy Waters had gone close for Crewe ahead of the break when rounding goalkeeper Sam Walker, until Ben Gordon blocked.
Manchester City loanee Greg Leigh then drilled over from the edge of the area and also headed a Waters cross against the woodwork from close-range.
But Sears needed no second invitation from Watt’s 57th minute cross for the lead before Gavin Massey released Healey for another.
And it grew even worse for the hosts as Watt bundled a third beyond Matt Tootle on the line following a deflection off new signing Alan Tate.
Crewe Alexandra: Garratt, Tootle, Tate, Ray, Guthrie (Inman 68), Grant, Ness (Oliver 75), Turton, Leigh, Waters, Haber (Cooper 83)
subs (unused): Shearer, Dugdale, Atkinson, Nolan
Colchester United: Walker, Clohessy, Eastman, Kent, Gordon, Gilbey, Eastmond (Healey 55), Moncur (Wright 89), Sears (Wright 77), Massey, Watt
subs (unused): Lewington, Lawrence, Vose, Sembie-Ferris
Goals: Sears (57), Healey (63), Watt (67)
Ref: E. Ilderton
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