The Minstermen have been blighted by late goals during 2014-15 with Tranmere, Northampton and Morecambe having all denied the Bootham Crescent club maximum points after the raising of the fourth official’s board.
Doncaster, meanwhile, knocked York out of the Capital One Cup with a 90th-minute strike by Harry Forrester, but the tables were finally turned, against a Plymouth team bidding for their eighth consecutive home win.
Jake Hyde’s 94th-minute leveller cancelled out Bobby Reid’s early deflected effort for the hosts and York have now taken eight points from a possible 12 on the road since Russ Wilcox took over from Nigel Worthington as manager last month.
Following Hyde’s fifth goal of the season, the jubilant former Scunthorpe boss admitted: “It felt like a win because it’s happened the other way round to us so many times this season and I am delighted for the whole group because we dug in against a quality team.”
Impressive on-loan Bristol City midfielder Reid opened the scoring in the third minute when the ball returned to him following a right-wing corner. He skipped past Luke Summerfield’s attempted challenge before his curling shot deflected off Femi Ilesanmi and sailed over the head of goalkeeper Alex Cisak.
Keith Lowe and Josh Carson both went on to miss great first-half chances to equalise, but Plymouth were more wasteful after the break with Dominic Blizzard, Lewis Alessandra and Deane Smalley all firing over from clear shots on the visitors’ goal.
Ex-Barnet striker Hyde made them pay when he pounced from two yards following substitute Diego De Girolamo’s low left-wing cross and, after Luke McCormick had saved his first effort, kept his composure to net from the rebound.
Plymouth Argyle: McCormick; Mellor, O’Connor, Nelson, Hartley, Kellett; Cox, B Reid; Blizzard, R Reid (Smalley, 81), Alessandra. Unused substitutes: Bittner, Purrington, Norburn, Banton, Harvey, Thomas.
York City: Cisak; McCoy, Lowe (McCombe, 73), Zubar, Ilesanmi; Carson (De Girolamo, 61), Penn, Summerfield, Coulson; Hyde, Fletcher (Morris, 77). Unused substitutes: Ingham, Halliday, Montrose, Meikle.
Referee: Tim Robinson (West Sussex).
Man of the match: Michael Coulson (York).