Northampton manager Jon Brady hailed his side’s “incredible performance” during their hard-fought 1-0 victory over Leyton Orient.
The Cobblers were without five senior defenders and then lost key striker Kion Etete early in the first half.
But Sam Hoskins toe-poked Northampton ahead shortly before half-time and then a superb defensive display in horrible conditions at Sixfields kept Orient at bay, condemning them to only their third league defeat of the season.
It was also Northampton’s fifth straight win at home and Brady said: “I’m delighted.
“I thought it was two teams really battling against the conditions, which were horrible for football.
“They had a right go but we had a go as well and we stood up strong to them.
“We were without a few key players but I have asked the squad to step up and they did because to a man, right until the end, we defended brilliantly.
“We put bodies on the line and I couldn’t have asked for any more from any single player – I don’t want to single anyone out.
“It was an incredible performance in terms of the attitude to battle and not give in.
“We get the first goal and you think how tough it could have been in the second half with the wind in their favour but we stood up strong and we faced everything they threw on us – it was exceptional.”
The defeat ended Orient’s 11-game unbeaten run.
Boss Kenny Jackett said: “It was a tight game. I thought in the first half we played quite well and had a lot of chances all the way through the game.
“We’re disappointed with their goal because it’s a flick-on from a long throw and Hoskins has got across Theo Archibald and it’s 1-0.
“But where I’m really disappointed is the second half because we didn’t get going, we didn’t get hold of the ball and we didn’t use our pace wide.
“Our passing was poor at times, we played in front of them too much and we didn’t draw them out.
“We can blame the referee or the conditions but that’s not what I want to do because we need to move the ball better, be more incisive and create more chances.
“To be fair to Northampton, we allowed them to do a job on us in the second half. We’re looking at our own performance.
“We created quite a lot in the first half and their goalkeeper had to make a couple of good saves but we ran out of ideas and we ran out of steam to be honest.”
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