Nicky Law finally broke the resistance of 10-man Port Vale in the second minute of stoppage-time to give Rotherham their first win in five league games and a 2-1 victory at Vale Park.
The Millers had rarely threatened to find a way through after home defender Luke Prosser was sent off for a second bookable offence on the stroke of half-time.
But Law raced into the danger area to curl a left-foot shot past goalkeeper Chris Martin from 15 yards to break Vale hearts.
There were chances at both ends in a lively and hard-fought first half and Rotherham took a 31st-minute lead through Stephen Brogan.
Vale drew level five minutes later through Prosser, whose joy was shortlived after he was then sent off for two bookings in quick succession.
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