Match ends, Walsall 1, Southend United 0.
Jordy Hiwula kept Walsall's League One automatic promotion hopes alive as his late winner downed mid-table Southend.
The on-loan striker headed an 88th-minute corner against the underside of the bar and, although it was cleared, the assistant referee awarded a goal.
Dan Bentley had earlier made fine saves from Romaine Sawyers, Milan Lalkovic and Hiwula to keep the scores level.
Goalkeeper Neil Etheridge saved Adam Barrett's volley to deny the visitors an injury-time equaliser.
The Saddlers are now within three points of the automatic promotion places after second-placed Burton Albion were held to a 0-0 draw by Barnsley.
With a game in hand and a slightly better goal difference over Burton, automatic promotion from League One is now back in the Saddlers' own hands.
Walsall interim head coach Jon Whitney told BBC WM:
"If I thought about how it's been over the past six weeks, I would be worn out. But I've got an energy about me. The players enthuse me.
"I always talk about this energy balance and we have to give it back. The players have to be energised and they are doing that.
"I'm just really pleased about the way we won and the way that we ground it out."
- 7ChambersBooked at 77mins
- 8MantomSubstituted forCookat 81'minutes
- 15LalkovicSubstituted forMorrisat 74'minutesBooked at 85mins
- 12AtkinsonBooked at 31minsSubstituted forHurstat 78'minutes
- 22DeeganBooked at 81mins
- 17McLaughlinSubstituted forMcQueenat 70'minutes
- 19BarnettSubstituted forLozaat 85'minutes
- Keith Hill
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Walsall 1, Southend United 0.
Adam Chambers (Walsall) wins a free kick in the attacking half.
Foul by Adam Barrett (Southend United).
Corner, Southend United. Conceded by Neil Etheridge.
Attempt saved. Adam Barrett (Southend United) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.
Foul by Romaine Sawyers (Walsall).
Sam McQueen (Southend United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Jason Demetriou (Walsall) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Sam McQueen (Southend United).
Attempt saved. Kieron Morris (Walsall) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom right corner.
Goal! Walsall 1, Southend United 0. Jordy Hiwula-Mayifuila (Walsall) header from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Kieron Morris with a cross following a corner.
Corner, Walsall. Conceded by Adam Barrett.
Corner, Walsall. Conceded by Daniel Bentley.
Attempt saved. Kieron Morris (Walsall) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top left corner.
Paul Downing (Walsall) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Jamar Loza (Southend United).
Kieron Morris (Walsall) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Foul by Kieron Morris (Walsall).
Ben Coker (Southend United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.