Only a stunning 88th minute equaliser from former Gresley striker Brian Woodall denied Burton Albion a first win at Dagenham & Redbridge since season 2003-04. Jacques Maghoma's 48th minute strike seemed to have the Brewers heading for a rare away win but Woodall's stunning 25 yarder secured a share of the spoils.
Calvin Zola returned to the Burton Albion squad but only made it as far as the bench in terms of Albion's starting line-up. After two home performances that yielded four points to move the Brewers closer to League 2 safety it was an unchanged team for Albion at the start of the Easter programme. Zola was recalled in place of Preston loanee Seanan Clucas with the bench having a strong look to it.
Fresh from their victory away at Port Vale last weekend, the Daggers were also looking for the points required to secure another season of League football after a disappointing campaign following their relegation from League One at the end of last season.
A tame start to the game saw both sides probing but to no real effect in effect in the opening stages but it was Albion with the first effort on goal as Greg Pearson found himself in the left hand channel inside the box but he was unable to keep down an angled effort that went high over the bar in the 13th minute.
Albion had to survive shouts for handball against Jack Dyer shortly after but it was the Brewers stringing their passes together better in the early stages and with Jimmy Phillips seeing plenty of the ball it was Gary Rowett's men looking the more dangerous. Phillips did well on 18 minutes to trick his way inside and drill a ball across the area that was gratefull y clutched by Chris Lewington in the home goal.
Pearson was then close with a glancing header in the 21st minute as Scott Doe miscontrolled a ball forward from Aaron Webster allowing Phillips to nip in and feed Richards on the right for a cross into the centre where his strike partner was waiting.
Aaron Webster picked up a yellow card in the 24th minute. Having alreeady brought down Medy Elito once moments before a second infringement on the same player saw referee Gavin Ward book the Albion man and award Dagenham a free kick in a dangerous position twenty five yards from goal. Fortunately for Albion the defensive wall did its job and Dominic Green's effort was safely blocked.
Another moment of danger passed for Albion on the half hour when Green hurled a long throw into the area, John Akinde got a flick on but there was nobody at the back post to take advantage of a good chance.
Dagenham had another opportunity on 38 minutes but again failed to test Ross Atkins in the Burton goal. A challenge in the middle from Jack Dyer put the ball into the path of Green and he was able to pull the ball back for midfielder Michael Spillane who drove well wide of the goal. Former Gresley striker Brian Woodall linked up well with his strike partner John Akinde moments later but under pressure the former Bristol City man could only head over the crossbar.
It was the home side pressing more in the closing stages of the first half and Mathieu Baudry forced a good save from Atkins low down to his right with Spillane firing over from the resulting corner kick.
When half time arrived it signalled the end of a first half that was in all honesty low on quality between two sides looking for much needed league points.
Half time: Dagenham & Redbridge 0-0 Burton Albion
Dagenham had a glorious chance to open the scoring barely a minute into the second period. Andy Corbett conceded a corner and then had to clear Akinde's effort off the line as Albion almost got caught cold.
All of a sudden Albion had the lead on 48 minutes from nowhere. There appeared little danger when Jacques MAGHOMA picked up a short pass from Jack Dyer on the edge of the box. Surrounded by defender he looked for a way out and then lauched a curling left foot effort over the head of Lewington who could do nothing to keep it out.
The Brewers made a change just before the hour mark. Jack Dyer was the man to be sacrificed to allow Maghoma to move more central with Lionel Ainsworth introduced on the wing.
Another Dagenham corner on 63 minutes had Albion defensively stretched and this time it was Adam Bolder guarding the far post who had to head away from danger as Scott Doe tried to head home.
Calvin Zola was introduced into the action on 65 minutes in a direct swap with Richards as the Brewers looked to inject some fresh impetus into their attack. Similarly the Daggers tried to liven their attack up with Josh Scott replacing Akinde and Josh Parker coming on for Green amid a flurry of substitutions.
Albion made their third change on 71 minutes with Patrick Ada coming on for Greg Pearson as Albion went 4-1-4-1 to try and protect what they had.
Playing almost exclusively on the counter attack Albion could have double their lead when Zola turned well and played the ball into the path of Bolder but his shot was only deflected wide for a corner.
Just when it looked as it Albion were heading for a third consecutive clean sheet WOODALL produced a stunning 25 yard equaliser. The striker picked up the ball in space and was able to turn and fire across the goal and into the far corner.
Five minutes of stopage time failed to produce a winner and both sides edged another point closer to safety.
DAGGERS: Lewington, McCrory, Doe, Arber, Elito, Ogogo, Woodall, Baudry, Green, Akinde (Scott, 67), Spillane. Substitutes: Hogan, Scott, Parker, Bingham, Wassmer.
ALBION: Atkins; Corbett, Stanton, Austin, Webster; Maghoma, Bolder, Dyer (Ainsworth, 57), Philliips; Pearson, Richards (Zola, 65). Substitutes: James, Taylor, Ada.
Referee: Mr. G.Ward (Surrey)
Attendance: 2,035 (123 away)
GOALS: Dagenham - Woodall (88); Burton - Maghoma (48)