Morecambe extended their unbeaten home run to 10 games and moved up to sixth in the table with an excellent victory over Colchester United at the Mazuma Stadium.
Goals from Adam Phillips, Toumani Diagouraga and John O’Sullivan gave the Shrimps the points against a Colchester side who were reduced to 10 men just before the hour when skipper Harry Pell was sent off for an off the ball incident.
Boss derek Adams made two changes from the side which drew against Walsall in midweek with emergency loanee goalkeeper Jökull Andrésson coming in for Mark Halstead and Jordan Slew returning to the starting line up for Aaron Wildig.
Morecambe started well with Stephen Hendrie firing wide from distance and Phillips seeing a free-kick from 25 yards well saved by Dean Gerken.
But after a bright start it was Colchester who looked the more threatening.
Andrésson reacted well to hold Cohen Bramall’s header and Noah Chilvers shot wide from long range before the U’s were denied by the woodwork on 27 minutes when Jevani Brown found Callum Harriott shot from the edge of the area struck the right-hand post.
The woodwork came to Morecambe’s rescue again on 39 minutes when a corner swung in from the left was headed goal wards by Tommy Smith but the ball hit the foot of the post and rebounded to safety.
Colchester continued to press and Andrésson produced an excellent save low to his left to turn away a low shot from Kwame Poku that was heading for the bottom corner.
After surviving the pressure the Shrimps took the lead in first half injury time with a superb counter attack goal.
Carlos Mendes Gomes received the ball just inside the Colchester half and produced a superb through ball for Phillips who rounded Gerken before slotting home his ninth of the season to give the Shrimps the lead at the perfect time.
The Shrimps made a tactical change with Diagouraga replacing Slew for the second half and it was a decision that quickly paid off with the midfielder making it 2-0 after converting a cross from O’Sullivan on 58 minutes.
Two minutes later Colchester skipper Harry Pell was shown a straight red card after an altercation with Ryan Cooney and the Shrimps took advantage of the extra man with 10 minutes remaining.
O’Sullivan fired home from Phillips’ pass to make it 10 games without defeat on home soil.
Morecambe: Andrésson, Cooney, Lavelle, Knight-Percival, Hendrie, Phillips, Songo’o, O’Sullivan (rep Price 90), Mendes-Gomes, Slew (rep Diagouraga 46), Stockton (McAlinden 83). Subs not used: Da Silva Mendes, Pringle, Gibson.
Colchester United: Gerken, Eastman, Sowunmi, Smith, Bramall, Stevenson, Pell, Poku (rep Welch-Hayes 66), Chilvers, Harriott (rep Oteh 64), Brown (rep Folivi 81). Subs not used: George, Senior, Marshall, Sayer.
Referee: Robert Lewis.