Tim Hopkinson ensured Ilkeston Town returned to winning ways after back to back defeats away at Hinckley AFC and Alfreton, with a 2-1 victory over Pershore Town.
The forward’s winner, his fifth strike in as many games, came in the 85th minute just as it looked as if the points would be shared.
The home side controlled the game throughout and were 1-0 up at the break through Jamie Walker’s 20-yard strike in the 36th minute.
The Robins were unlucky not to be further ahead at the break, with Alex Marshall having a header ruled out in the opening ten minutes, as well as forcing Toby Wilcox into a good save late on.
Martin Lench, starting back to back games for the first time since October, came close with a 30-yard drive.
But Pershore hung on and were fortunate to make it to the break just one down.
Ilkeston fans can be forgiven for thinking back to Hinckley when Charlie Ntamark raced in minutes after the restart to level. But the Robins composed themselves and got back onto the front foot.
Substitute Malachi Lavelle-Moore came close with his first touch, seeing his volley hit Hopkinson.
Ilkeston continued to push for the winner and would have had a second had someone got on the end of Hopkinson’s fizzing ball across the six-yard box. White was inches away from tapping home Walker’s cross just moments before Walker headed wide from Billy Bennett’s ball in.
It seemed like the game was heading for a draw, but Ilkeston’s got their reward with just five minutes left on the clock. Hopkinson turned in the area and fired high into the net to ensure the home side got the well-deserved three points.
Ilkeston: 1- Deakin, 2-Fairclough (White), 3- Walker, 4- Shaw, 5- Jemson, 6-T Marshall, 7- Lench (Edwards), 8- Wheatley, 9- A Marshall (Lavelle-Moore), 10- Hopkinson, 11- Bennett