Richards pays the penalty as Walsall edge out Northampton
Marc Richards skied a stoppage-time penalty as Northampton's recent woes on the road continued after a 2-1 defeat at Walsall.
The Cobblers took the lead through John-Joe O'Toole midway through the first half but they have now lost their last six away games as quickfire goals from Matt Preston and Erhun Oztumer after the interval propelled Walsall to within four points of the Sky Bet League One play-off places.
Preston had earlier spurned an opportunity to put the Saddlers ahead early on as the defender hammered his shot on the turn against a post, and Northampton capitalised on the let-off by taking a 23rd-minute lead.
O'Toole fired home from close range after Walsall goalkeeper Neil Etheridge dropped Matty Taylor's floated free-kick.
It remained that way until the 64th minute, when Walsall equalised thanks to Preston stretching out a leg to poke home Florent Cuvelier's deep corner from close range.
Northampton could have regained the lead but Richards headed inches wide from Rod McDonald's inviting cross.
And the Saddlers completed the turnaround on 69 minutes, with Oztumer rifling home from close range after Cobblers keeper Adam Smith made a superb save to deny Isaiah Osbourne.
Northampton pressed for an equaliser and Etheridge atoned for his earlier error with a superb reaction save from a bullet O'Toole header.
The visitors' best chance of a leveller came in the fifth minute of stoppage time after Adam Chambers' trip on Richards gave the striker the chance to earn Northampton a point from the spot but he blazed his penalty over.