York City spoiled Carlisle’s homecoming at Brunton Park after being held 1-1 in their first match on home soil in almost two months.
The Blues have been in enforced exile after the floods caused by Storm Desmond in November left their ground unplayable, with United having to stage ‘home’ matches at Blackburn, Preston and Blackpool in the meantime.
It had looked set to be a happy homecoming for the Cumbrians as well when Jason Kennedy gave them a 15th-minute lead, but they had to settle for a draw as rock-bottom York snatched an 87th-minute equaliser through Luke Summerfield.
At the top of the table, the clash between promotion hopefuls Plymouth and Bristol Rovers at the Memorial Stadium also finished in a 1-1 draw with another similarly dramatic finale.
Billy Bodin’s 79th-minute strike put fourth-placed Rovers ahead but Josh Simpson salvaged a point for Argyle with an 88th-minute equaliser.
That was not enough to keep Plymouth in top spot though, with Northampton going two points clear after beating Morecambe 3-1 to record their 10th league win in 11 matches.
Goals from James Collins, John-Joe O’Toole and Rod McDonald meant the game was as good as over before Paul Mullin’s 72nd-minute consolation for Morecambe.
Oxford, in third, closed to within five points of Plymouth with a 1-0 win at fifth-placed Portsmouth, substitute Jordan Bowery scoring the only goal of the game 14 minutes from time.
Accrington Stanley and Wycombe, the two other teams in the play-off spots at the start of the day, were both beaten.
Accrington went down 2-1 at Exeter, Christian Ribeiro netting a late winner after early goals from Tom Nichols and Shay McCartan, while Wycombe lost 2-0 at home to Leyton Orient as strikes from Jay Simpson and Calaum Jahraldo-Martin gave new player-manger Kevin Nolan a winning start.
Wycombe’s third successive loss saw them drop to ninth below Orient and AFC Wimbledon, who moved up to seventh with a 2-0 win at Notts County thanks to goals from Tom Elliott and Andy Barcham.
Yeovil climbed out of the relegation places after claiming their second win in three matches, goals from substitutes Ryan Bird and Tahvon Campbell helping them to a 2-1 victory over Crawley, whose reply came from Lee Barnard.
Dagenham and Redbridge dropped into the bottom two after letting a two-goal lead slip in a 2-2 draw at relegation rivals Newport. Christian Doidge and Joe Worrall struck in the opening six minutes to put Dagenham in charge but Newport rallied late on with John-Christophe Ayina and Tom Owen-Evans scoring in the final seven minutes to salvage a point for the hosts.
Hartlepool were denied a much-needed win at Cambridge by a late equaliser, Jake Gray’s opener being cancelled out by Ben Williamson’s 89th-minute leveller in a 1-1 draw, while goals from Paddy McCourt and Pelly Ruddock earned Luton a 2-0 win at Mansfield. Stevenage and Barnet shared a goalless draw.