An acrobatic Nicky Deverdics strike set Hartlepool United on their way to victory over 10-man Accrington at the Northern Gas & Power Stadium.
Having gone more than seven months without claiming three points at the Vic, the midfielder's strike, after Padraig Amond's penalty miss, and a late Lewis Alessandra goal, proved enough to see Craig Hignett's men edge yet further from the League Two drop zone.
Switching to a 3-5-2, having abandoned his usual 4-3-3 formation, Pools were second best in a poor first 45.
But the game burst into life when Mark Hughes was dismissed for an infringement in the area, and a spot-kick awarded.
While he netted at Doncaster last weekend, taker Amond fluffed his lines this time, seeing his pen saved low by Elliot Parish, but from the rebound, after Lewis Hawkins had followed it in, Deverdics acrobatically volleyed home Pools' winner.
Having lived dangerously in a defensive sense, Pools did have Trevor Carson to thank late on, as he produced a brilliant save to deny sub Patrick Lacey when one-on-one.
And into added time a slick passing move by the hosts ended with a Amond cross and Alessandra finish from close range.
Pools: Trevor Carson 7, Matthew Bates 6, Toto Nsiala 7, Scott Harrison 6, Lewis Hawkins 7, Nicky Featherstone 6, Nicky Deverdics (Michael Woods 76, 6) 7, Josh Laurent 7, James Martin (Jake Carroll 66,7) 7, Padraig Amond 7, Lewis Alessandra 7.
Subs: Adam Bartlett, Brad Walker, Billy Paynter, Rhys Oates, Jake Orrell.
Accrington XI: Elliot Parish 7, Mark Hughes 4, Omar Beckles 5, Zak Vyner 6, Jordan Clarke 6, Scott Brown 6, Shay McCartan 7, Sean McConville 7, John O'Sullivan 6, Seamus Conneely (Romauld Boco 82, N/A) 6, Billy Kee (Patrick Lacey 67, 6) 4.
Subs: Aaron Davies, Terry Gornell, Gary Taylor-Fletcher, Aaron Chapman, Ross Sykes.