Fejiri Okenabirhie was again Cambridge’s hero from the bench as the U’s beat Reading 1-0.
The match looked set to end in a frenetic but ultimately goalless draw, but the home side broke through seven minutes from time to take the points.
James Brophy burst into the box and squared for Okenabirhie to slam home from eight yards, the second home game in a row in which he has opened the scoring as a substitute.
Cambridge had almost gone ahead within the opening minute, with Gassan Ahadme’s header somehow kept out by Reading keeper David Button.
At the other end U’s stopper Will Mannion produced a fine double stop to deny Caylon Vickers and Ben Elliott.
It was Cambridge who piled forward after half-time, with Button pushing a Paul Digby effort wide at his near post.
After Okenabirhie provided the game’s decisive moment, Reading almost snatched an equaliser five minutes into added time, but ex-Cambridge man Harvey Knibbs smashed his effort onto the underside of the bar and down onto the goal line.