Defender Julian Bennett scored his first goal in six months to revive Nottingham Forest's automatic promotion challenge with a win over Northampton.
Bennett powered home a header from James Perch's cross on 66 minutes.
David Prutton, on loan from Southampton, almost marked his return to the City Ground with a goal but was denied by a superb save from Mark Bunn.
Ian Taylor saw an effort come back off the bar but otherwise the Cobblers found it hard to get into the game.
Nottm Forest: Smith, Bennett, Curtis, Breckin, Morgan, Perch, Gary Holt, Prutton, Lester (Commons 88), Grant Holt (Agogo 75), Dobie (Tyson 54).
Subs Not Used: Pedersen, McGugan.
Booked: Lester, Bennett.
Goals: Bennett 66.
Northampton: Bunn, Holt, Hughes, Pearce, Crowe, Bradley Johnson, Taylor, Laird (Gilligan 64), Aiston, Deuchar, Kirk (Jess 73).
Subs Not Used: Dunn, Hunt, May.
Booked: Hughes, Aiston.
Ref: T Bates (Staffordshire).