A controversial late penalty gave Numancia a vital 1-0 win in their relegation six-pointer against 10-man Recreativo Huelva on Sunday.
The match, which had seemed destined for a goaless draw, was turned on its head three minutes from time when Iago Bouzon fouled Gorka Brit and the referee pointed to the penalty spot even though the incident appeared to have occurred outside the area.
The Recre players immediately surrounded Perez Lasa and Andres Lamas was handed a second yellow for his protests.
Jose Javier Barkero coolly dispatched the penalty to clinch a crucial three points for Numancia which lifts them into second from bottom and two points off safety.
Recre replace them at the foot of the Primera Division standings and will need something of a miracle to stay up as, with just two games left, they are four points off 17th-placed Sporting Gijon who they face on the final day of the season.
Numancia started the brighter and could have taken the lead in the sixth minute but Javier Del Pino failed to connect properly with a good cross from Carlos Aranda.
They went even closer minutes later when Cesar Palacios headed Juan Quero's cross inches wide from the centre of the penalty area.
Palacios was guilty of missing another golden opportunity two minutes later when he failed to put away Juan Carlos Moreno's cross.
Numancia should have been in the lead and they were almost made to rue their missed opportunities as in the 17th minute a mix-up in their defence let in Adrian Colunga but his 20-yard thunderbolt flew inches wide of the left upright.
The hosts ought to have put the result beyond doubt as a flurry of chances around the half-hour mark went begging.
First an unmarked Egoitz Jaio headed over the bar before Del Pino and Quero also sent their attempts off target.
Recre had barely a sight on goal but Asier Riesgo had little to do either with Numancia failing to test the visiting goalkeeper with their hatful of chances - Asier Goiria also heading wide shortly before the interval.
Numancia started the second half much the same as the first period and continued to dominate the match but could not find the back of the net.
Recre had a rare chance in the 53rd minute with a long-range effort from Javi Guerrero which flew well wide.
The hosts were inching closer to goal and they almost broke the deadlock in the 72nd minute but Barkero's 25-yard free-kick crashed off the crossbar.
The visitors thought they had succeeded in preventing their opponents from taking a deserved win before disaster struck for them in the dying minutes,
Bouzon's trip on Gorka was clearly outside the area but the referee pointed straight to the penalty spot much to the visitors' anger, and their misery was compounded when Lamas was given a second yellow card and his marching orders for protesting.
Barkero lashed the penalty into the bottom right corner to give Numancia the edge in the relegation dogfight and leave Recre fuming at what could prove to be a very costly defeat.