Second-placed Sunderland at least showed their mettle by coming back from 2-0 down with 10 men to claim a last-gasp 2-2 draw at Walsall. The Black Cats had Max Power sent off for a third time this season early on before falling behind to goals from Josh Gordon and Josh Ginnelly after the break. Aiden McGeady began the fightback just after the hour before Lynden Gooch grabbed their dramatic equaliser on 89 minutes.
Barnsley moved up to third on goal difference from Luton and Peterborough after drawing 1-1 with Doncaster at Oakwell. Cauley Woodrow netted the Tykes' equaliser after Herbie Kane opened the scoring for Rovers.
Peterborough could only draw 1-1 with Coventry on Friday night.
Luton were 3-1 winners at Gillingham. Andrew Shinnie got the Hatters off to a fine start before a second-half double from Elliot Lee put the game beyond the hosts at Priestfield, although Tom Eaves scored a consolation.
Bottom side Bradford claimed their first victory since October and only their fourth of the campaign with a 2-0 success over Oxford at the Northern Commercials Stadium. David Ball and Jack Payne scored the Bantams' goals in the space of three minutes midway through the first half, but victory may have been soured slightly by the late sending off of Nathaniel Knight-Percival.
It was not enough to climb off the bottom as the sides immediately above them, AFC Wimbledon and Plymouth, were also victorious.
Wimbledon ended an eight-game losing streak by beating Southend 2-1. Goals from Deji Oshilaja and Mitch Pinnock saw them come from behind after an early Will Nightingale own goal.
Freddie Ladapo struck twice as Plymouth won 2-1 against Fleetwood, for whom Paddy Madden scored a late reply.
The other side in the bottom four, Bristol Rovers, were beaten 3-1 at Charlton, who climbed to sixth as a result. Jamie Ward, Joe Aribo and Karlan Ahearne-Grant netted for the Addicks, with Joe Martin on target for Rovers.
Armand Gnanduillet, Jordan Thompson and Joe Dodoo fired Blackpool to a 3-0 win over Burton, while Ian Henderson's header earned Rochdale a 1-0 victory over Accrington Stanley.
Wycombe came from behind to beat Shrewsbury 3-2. Aaron Holloway scored inside four minutes for the Shrews at Adams Park, but the hosts hit back through Adam El-Abd and Joe Jacobson. Alex Samuel added a third and that proved enough, despite Fejiri Okenabirhie ensuring a tight finish with a second Shrews goal on 73 minutes.