Iron and Spireites both held
Southend clawed back a two-goal deficit to grab a 2-2 draw at League Two high-fliers Scunthorpe, while Chesterfield drew at AFC Wimbledon.
Matt Sparrow and Sam Winnall had put the Iron 2-0 up in the first half but Phil Brown's troops fought back and two goals in seven minutes from John Egan and John White gave them a point.
Leaders Chesterfield missed the chance to pull away from Scunthorpe as they were held to a 1-1 draw away at AFC Wimbledon.
George Francomb put the Dons ahead five minutes into the second half but Ollie Banks equalised just five minutes later.
It was a poor evening all round for the top three with Rochdale suffering a shock 2-1 defeat to rock-bottom Torquay.
Krystian Pearce had given the Gulls the lead but Jamie Allen levelled the scores before the break.
Joss Labadie restored the lead for Torquay eight minutes from time and Dale's chances of snatching a point disappeared when Oliver Lancashire was dismissed near the end.
Daniel Nardiello scored twice as Bury drew 2-2 against Fleetwood.
Antoni Sarcevic put Town ahead before the former Barnsley man levelled only for Jamille Matt to restore the visitors' lead.
Nardiello was not done, though, and his 61st-minute penalty saw that the spoils were shared.
Ryan Williams and Jamie Cureton exchanged goals as Oxford drew 1-1 with Cheltenham while Burton were held to goalless draw on the south coast against Portsmouth.
Plymouth in eighth were the highest-placed team to win on Tuesday night with Conor Hourihane's goal giving them a 1-0 win at Wycombe.
York are just two points off the play-offs courtesy of a 1-0 win of their own away at Mansfield.
Ryan Bowman's penalty was enough to hand them all three points with Wes Fletcher missing a chance to extend the lead from the spot in stoppage-time.
Tom Naylor's dismissal just before the hour proved to be the turning point as Morecambe claimed a 4-1 win over Newport.
County had led 1-0 thanks to Naylor's goal but he was then sent off for a foul on Kevin Ellison with Jamie Devitt netting the resulting penalty.
Ellison then put the Shrimps ahead before two goals from Jack Redshaw sealed victory.
Adebayo Azeez's brace handed Dagenham a 2-1 win over Bristol Rovers who had taken the lead thanks to John-Joe O'Toole's opener.
Ian Morris scored the only goal as Northampton claimed a vital 1-0 win over Exeter in the battle for survival while Accrington and Hartlepool played out a goalless draw.