Preston's winless league run at Deepdale continued after the Lilywhites drew a blank in a goalless draw at home to north west rivals Bury.
Despite home wins in the FA Cup, Graham Westley's side are without a home league win since beating Yeovil on September 29. Meanwhile, the Shakers have not won in any competition since November 20.
In a game of few chances, Preston came closest to breaking the deadlock early on but Will Hayhurst's low, 10th-minute shot was blocked after John Welsh's cut-back.
At the other end, Stephen Schumacher's dipping 20-yard free-kick went over after 17 minutes and Zac Thompson fired into the side-netting midway through the first half.
With neither side able to make a breakthrough, tensions increased and Chris Beardsley was furious not to be given a penalty on the half-hour mark when he went down under Efe Sodje's challenge.
The match continued in the same vein after the break with Thompson's 20-yard scissor-kick in the 73rd minute - pushed away by Thorsten Stuckmann after an awkward bounce - a rare highlight.