A spectacular Ollie Palmer double helped Crawley come from behind to win 3-2 at Leyton Orient and claim their first away win of the Sky Bet League 2 season.
Former Reds loanee Josh Wright gave the hosts the with an impressive long-range strike before Nathan Ferguson scored his third of the season with a well-timed effort on the half-hour to make it 1-1.
Orient again took the lead early on in the second-half through Lee Angol’s penalty after Jordan Maguire-Drew was brought down in the area.
But Palmer who made an immediate impact from the bench with two goals in three minutes midway through the second half before Reds defended strongly in the closing stages to claim three points.
Gabriele Cioffi made four changes from the side that lost narrowly to Crewe in midweek at home, with summer signings Josh Dacres-Cogley and Ferguson returning to the side along with Reece Grego-Cox and Dannie Bulman who captained the team.
There was a good atmosphere around the ground from the off with the 424 travelling Crawley supporters making some great noise.
The opening chance of the game fell to Orient’s Maguire-Drew who latched onto a loose ball, driving into the box and unleashing a strike which was parried away spectacularly by Glenn Morris. Moments later Louis Dennis found some space on the right, skipping past both Panutche Camara and Josh Doherty before unleashing a drilled cross that rolled along the goalmouth, escaping the oncoming Orient runners.
It was an unlucky return to the side for Dacres-Cogley who was forced off with an injury only 15 minutes with David Sesay the man to replace him.
Crawley took their time to find their fluency in attack but it began to show after 20 minutes when Ferguson had a drilled effort blocked well by the boot of Dean Brill.
However Reds suffered a blow on 22 minutes when they were unable to keep a thunderous strike from Wright who fired past Morris from 25 yards to make it 1-0.
Just before the half-hour mark Crawley responded emphatically after soaking up waves of Orient pressure. Ferguson scored his third goal of the season, pouncing alertly with a side-footed strike after Bez Lubala and Tom Dallison were able to work a shot at goal before the ball was parried into the path of Ferguson to make it 1-1.
The hosts started brightly in the second half and their captain Josh Coulson played in Dennis whose shot was saved with his legs by Morris.
On 54 minutes it was 2-1. Sesay brushed over Maguire-Drew in the box and a penalty was awarded by the referee. Angol stepped up confidently and gave Orient the lead.
Then Palmer made a dramatic intervention. On 70 minutes Doherty’s corner found its way the to No.9 and he found a yard of space before drilling the ball past Brill into the far corner. 2-2.
Two minutes later Grego-cox received a fantastic pass from Lubala wide on the right before getting in behind to square the ball to Palmer who tapped in and made it 3-2.
It was backs-to-the-wall stuff at times in the closing stages but Reds defended strongly to protect their advantage and move into the top half of the table.
Crawley Town: Morris; Dacres-Cogley (Sesay 16’), Dallison, Tunnicliffe, Doherty; Bulman, Ferguson (Morais 62’), Camara; Lubala, Grego-Cox, Nadesan (Palmer 58’). Unused subs: Luyambula, Nathaniel-George, Francomb, Galach.
Attendance: 4905 (424 Crawley)
Pictured: Ollie Palmer scores his first goal in the 3-2 win. (James Boardman)