Manager Paul Sturrock praised Ryan Hall after his two goals helped Southend beat Dagenham to the Johnstone's Paint Trophy quarter-finals.
Hall, who missed a 50th-minute penalty, scored either side of a Damien McCrory equaliser and Shrimps substitute Neil Harris rounded off the 3-1 victory over Dagenham with the final kick of the game.
Southend boss Sturrock said: "The boy Hall, who has been sitting on the bench for the last couple of games, came on and did really well, could have got a hat-trick.
"I was very pleased that everybody responded well to the competition. It's disappointing not to keep a clean-sheet, but it was a deflection off the wall, there's nothing you can do about it.
"It was important to win, we don't want to lose games. Had we lost then we would have lost a bit of confidence going into the game on Saturday, but that's bolstered the troops now.
"My teams have always been that type that everybody gets an opportunity to score and I don't believe in hoping that the strikers are the key players, because I think there's too much pressure put on the strikers that way."