Jevani Brown bagged a brace as Colchester claimed a 2-1 home win over Leyton Orient.
Orient came close in the sixth minute when Jobi McAnuff’s powerful low effort from the edge of the area was well saved by goalkeeper Dean Gerken.
But Colchester took a 10th-minute lead through Brown, who latched onto Michael Folivi’s pass and coolly slotted past keeper Lawrence Vigouroux.
Orient responded well and Jordan Thomas’s fierce shot was blocked by Tommy Smith near his own goal-line.
McAnuff’s deflected effort flew over but Colchester almost doubled their lead just before the hour mark when Brown was denied by Vigouroux in a one-on-one situation.
Vigouroux denied Brown a minute later and then foiled Folivi.
But Brown made it 2-0 with 18 minutes remaining, slotting into the near post from close range for his 11th goal of the season after Courtney Senior’s effort had been blocked.
Sam Ling converted from fellow substitute Jordan Maguire-Drew’s delivery in the 88th minute to give Orient hope but Colchester held out.