Latics left Essex with a point from the crucial game in the battle for survival after a hard-fought draw with Colchester.
Davis Keillor-Dunn put Oldham in front during a strong first-half performance but despite chances to have extended their lead, the visitors were left to settle for a share of the spoils.
Backed by a brilliant following of 462 fans who made the long trip south, the result sees Latics extend their unbeaten run to six games under John Sheridan.
It is perhaps a mark of the progress made in recent weeks that Oldham were disappointed not to have taken maximum points but with the margins still fine at the foot of the table they will probably regard this as an opportunity missed.
Having named an unchanged line-up from the win against Bradford, Sheridan’s side picked up from where they had left off the previous weekend with a strong start.
They were rewarded for their early pressure on 19 minutes when Keillor-Dunn pounced for his fifth goal in four matches. As Nicky Adams played a free-kick into the Colchester area, Carl Piergianni won the flick on, allowing Keillor-Dunn to stab home the ball.
Having also created the two goals against Bradford, Adams caused havoc for the home side during the first period with the repeated quality of his dead balls and crosses from wide areas.
Keillor-Dunn should have given Latics an earlier lead but he was unable to get enough in his header after a charging run down the right and superb cross from Adams.
Latics continued to force the issue and Adams almost linked again with Keillor-Dunn, providing a cross which the attacker got to, only for the ball to be deflected wide.
From the left, Adams then sent in a set-piece which just escaped Harrison McGahey at the far post, while a cross from Jack Stobbs was cut out by Luke Chambers after good play from Hallam Hope.
The visitors had a golden chance to have added a second just before half-time with another rapid counter-attack. A weighted through-ball from Christopher Missilou saw Hope break the defensive line, but having entered the area, he placed his angled shot agonizingly wide.
Colchester opted to change their attacking options at the break, Freddie Sears replacing John Akinde and it was a move that shifted the course of the game.
The hosts equalised eight minutes after the re-start, a shot from Noah Chilvers taking a deflection off Jordan Clarke and past Danny Rogers in the Latics goal.
Colchester were now the team in the ascendancy, Rogers saving from Sears, who went close again before a chance for Tom Dallison.
As full-time approached, either team could have forced a winner, McGahey being denied by Shamal George, who also denied Adams after an initial effort from Keillor-Dunn.
At the other end, McGahey cleared a shot from Sears off the goal-line and a draw was probably a fair reflection of Latics’ performance.
Oldham Athletic: Rogers, Clarke, Hart, McGahey, Piergianni, Adams, Whelan (Hunt 73), Hope (Vaughan 83), Keilor-Dunn, Stobbs (Odabeyi 67), Missilou.
Subs not used: Leutwiler, Diarra, Hopcutt, Couto.
Colchester United: George, Chambers, Smith, Hannant (Wright 72), Skuse, Judge, Edwards, Chilvers, Dallison (Kenlock 87), Akinde (Sears 46), Coxe.
Subs not used: Hornby, Wiredu, Tchamadeu, Huws.
Referee: Andrew Haines
Attendance: 2,983 (462 away).