Shola Oladipo scored in the dying minutes of added time to extend Leyton Orient’s unbeaten run in the league to four matches.
The winger raced on to Freddy Moncur’s through ball in the fourth minute of added time to slot home the equaliser after Dagenham & Redbridge had taken the lead through Alfie Moulder on the 70th minute.
After a close opening ten minutes in which neither side managed an attempt on goal, chances were exchanged rapidly when Dagenham & Redbridge first saw shots from Jodi Jones and Alfie Moulder fly over the bar no less than a minute apart before Orient winger Sandro Semedo battled brilliantly to prevent the ball from going out for a goal kick and laid the ball back to Nick Brown whose shot whistled across goal.
Dagenham then had a goal disallowed on the 18th minute when Reeco Hackett headed in Henry Burnett’s cross from the right but the flag was correctly raised for offside.
Orient responded with a chance of their own, but Semedo was unable to keep his volley down from Shola Oladipo’s cross and his attempt went over.
Midway through the first half the Daggers’ nearly took the lead in fortuitous fashion when Moulder’s shot took a cruel deflection off Jack Humphrey but trickled wide of the post for a corner.
As the first half came to a close, Montel Agyemang attempted to curl a left footed effort into the top corner from outside the penalty area but Ben Crinkmay gathered the shot and the half ended all square.
Both ‘keepers had to be alert in the opening minutes of the second half as O’s stopper Ben Card reacted well to dive to his right and push a Jones shot away before Kane Adams raced down the other end and fired a rasping drive which was kept out by a strong hand from Crinkmay.
Jones then tested Card with a similar shot just after the hour but once again the goalkeeper dived well to his right, this time tipping the ball round the post for a corner.
Dagenham then finally made the breakthrough with 20 minutes remaining when Moulder poked the ball off of O’s defender Michael Clark on the edge of the box and tucked the ball under the rushing Card.
Orient then gained control of the match as they looked to grab an equaliser, but Oladipo dragged a shot wide with seven minutes remaining before Semedo’s low cross missed everyone before Freddy Moncur raced in at the back post only to see his close range shot somehow kept out.
It was not looking to be the O’s day until the 94th minute when they finally beat Crinkmay to equalise. With Orient pushing high up the pitch, Moncur latched onto a loose ball just inside the Daggers’ half and passed to Oladipo, who used his blistering pace to his advantage, and raced clear of the defence to slot past the keeper and grab a late point.
Academy director Andy Edwards was left pleased with his side’s character to salvage something from the match.
“It was a decent game with two sides that looked to play good football. I thought we probably had the best of the opportunities until we got punished for a mistake defensively,” admitted Edwards.
“It didn’t look like it was going to be our day after that but our reaction to conceding the goal was really good and we stuck at it, getting our reward in the end.”
ORIENT: Ben Card, Sam Ling (C), Michael Clark (Sam Alderson 79), Jack Humphrey, Kane Adams, Sandro Semedo, Montel Agyemang, Freddy Moncur, Shola Oladipo, Nick Brown (Christian Owusu 56), Victor Adeboyejo (Harry Andic 87)
SUBS: Josh Koroma
GOALS: Shola Oladipo (90+4)
DAGENHAM & REDBRIDGE: Ben Crinkmay, Jimmy Shepherd, David Nicol-Wilson, James Fitchett, Lewis Clark (C), Jodi Jones (Jimmy Nottage 85), Kai Heather, Ayo Olukoga, Reeco Hackett (Lee Hursit 46), Henry Burnett (Darren Foxley 68), Alfie Moulder
SUBS: Lou Chapman
GOALS: Alfie Moulder (70)
BOOKINGS: Alfie Moulder (90)