Colchester secured their fourth successive home win with a comfortable 2-0 victory over lowly Walsall.
Saddlers goalkeeper Jimmy Walker denied Ian Henderson and Oliver Lancashire's defensive header came back off his own post as Colchester pressed early on.
Us goalkeeper Ben Williams then foiled both Alex Nicholls and Julian Gray, before Colchester took the lead in the 18th minute when David Perkins drilled a low shot past Walker from 18 yards,
Kayode Odejayi's header bounced off the bar and Walker pushed Henderson's powerful effort over, before the former Colchester stopper turned the ball around the post after Aaron Lescott had sliced towards his own goal.
The hosts doubled their lead ten minutes after the break when David Mooney scored from the penalty spot after Richard Taundry was controversially adjudged to have brought Henderson down in the area.
Matthew Gill cleared Lloyd James' effort off the line and Walker denied Henderson as the U's boosted their play-off hopes.
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