John Johnson grabbed a late winner to earn Northampton all three points against fellow strugglers Lincoln with a 2-1 victory at Sixfields.
The defender hopped up to hit an unstoppable 88th-minute clincher to ease Town's worries and leave the Imps in trouble at the wrong end of League Two.
A poor first half saw both sides struggle to create any worthwhile chances. Billy McKay twice went close for Northampton with shots on the turn while Lincoln's best moment came midway through the half when Ashley Grimes forced Chris Dunn to tip over, while Ben Hutchinson then saw his header saved by the Cobblers keeper.
Northampton had a strong penalty appeal turned down before the break when Danny Hone charged down a close-range shot from Ryan Jarvis.
McKay then headed over on the hour mark before giving the Cobblers a 64th-minute lead, firing home from close range after Andy Holt's long throw was headed on by Abdul Osman.
Josh O'Keefe levelled matters in the 74th minute with a 30-yard piledriver which flew into the top corner with Dunn well beaten. Yet Lincoln's hopes of snatching a point were dashed when Johnson's superb late strike from 25-yards nestled in the top corner with Joe Anyon left rooted to the spot.