Rotherham striker Adam Le Fondre claimed his 29th goal of the season as the Millers snatched a late winner in a 1-0 win at Aldershot in their Coca-Cola League Two play-off semi-final first leg.
Le Fondre had endured a quiet second half of a tense game but took advantage of a defensive howler from Aaron Brown to put his side in pole position to book a Wembley final place ahead of the second leg at the Don Valley stadium on Wednesday night.
The lively Dean Morgan came closest for Aldershot but they now face a tough assignment in Sheffield to reach the Wembley showpiece.
Le Fondre almost had the ball in the net midway through the opening half when he stretched to intercept a weak back-header from Andy Sandell but the prolific striker was unable to hook the ball home.
Dean Morgan almost snatched a goal at the end of the half when he outpaced a static backline but Andy Warrington did well in the Millers goal to race out and hack the ball away.
Ryan Taylor then wasted the best chance of the evening on the hour mark. Rotherham right-back Mark Lynch cut inside onto his left foot and delivered a great cross to the back post. Taylor was onside and unmarked six yards out but steered his header wide.
It was a huge let-off for the hosts and Anthony Straker almost volleyed them into the lead moments later with an acrobatic effort which drifted narrowly wide.
Straker then drove another shot across the face of Warrington's net before Le Fondre stole in in the 88th minute.
Brown failed to look before playing a backpass from near the touchline and instead presented Le Fondre with a clear run at goal. Jaimez-Ruiz sprinted out to narrow the angle but Le Fondre calmly clipped the ball past him and into the corner.
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