Accrington Stanley boss Leam Richardson was gutted after a late leveller denied his side a vital win in their battle against the drop.
The Reds had looked on course for a much-needed victory after James Gray had put them ahead in the 58th minute and the Shrimpers had defender Ryan Cresswell sent off seven minutes later for violent conduct.
But Kevan Hurst scored an 82nd minute wonder goal to rescue a point for the promotion-chasers.
"It is frustrating we didn't win but I am so proud of the lads, each and every one of them" said Richardson, whose side dropped to 21st place in League Two.
"Sometimes you have to hold your hands up when the opposition score a goal like that as there isn't a lot you can do.
"James scored a great goal and was bright and proactive and, if we play like we did on Saturday, we will get out of trouble."
Ex-Middlesbrough striker Gray was delighted with only his second league goal as his came back into the Reds team to partner James Beattie up front.
"It was great to see it go in the back of the net but I had missed a couple of chances in the first half so I owed the lads one. Everyone just told me to keep going and one will come and it did.
"We do look at the table and we aren't in a good position but we are confident we can get out of it with performances like we showed on Saturday."