U's too hot for 10-man Preston
Last Updated: February 9, 2013 7:15pm
Freddie Sears: Scored the winner
Colchester eased their relegation fears with a 1-0 win over struggling Preston, who had Bailey Wright sent off.
U's striker Freddie Sears slammed home his fourth goal in five matches in the 55th minute to seal the points.
Colchester goalkeeper Sam Walker brilliantly denied Andy Proctor's header early on, while U's striker Freddie Sears was foiled by Preston keeper Thorsten Stuckmann., which rattled the post.
But Joe Garner's header from John Welsh's cross looped over the bar for Preston late in the half, as both teams attempted to break the deadlock.
Sears' low shot flashed wide, but the former West Ham youngster made no mistake 10 minutes after half-time when he converted from close range after Jabo Ibehre had latched on to George Porter's pass and lifted a shot towards goal.
Preston's Lee Holmes hit the crossbar with a curling shot with 18 minutes to go.
But the visitors' hopes were ended when defender Wright was sent off following an off-the-ball altercation with Ibehre with eight minutes remaining as Colchester secured a crucial win.
npower League 1
Sat 9th Feb
Bournemth2 - 0Portsmouth
Brentford2 - 2Bury
Carlisle2 - 1Stevenage
Colchester1 - 0Preston
Coventry0 - 1Yeovil
Doncaster1 - 2Walsall
Leyton Or2 - 1Tranmere
Notts Co1 - 1Crewe
Oldham3 - 1MK Dons
Scunthorpe2 - 1Crawley
Shrewsbury1 - 2Sheff Utd
Swindon1 - 1Hartlepool
npower League 1
|8||Milton Keynes Dons||46||70|
|14||Preston North End||46||59|