VICTORY said as much about Town's squad strength as it did about Pawel Abbott's excellent finishing.
Town had five major players sidelined through suspension or injury and still managed to beat Walsall with something to spare.
It was thanks to an excellent double from Abbott and a first League strike for the club by Junior Mendes, who ran half way down the pitch in celebration before putting the manager's bad back to the test by leaping into his arms.
It was engaging entertainment for another 11,000-plus crowd, but everyone appreciated the crucial saves of Ian Gray in helping Town move up to a handy seventh place in the table.
The big keeper blocked three times when Matty Fryatt was clean through on goal and was only beaten when Nathan Clarke inexplicably headed into his own net from Paul Merson's cross with 17 minutes left.
By then, the job was done.
Peter Jackson's side had taken control with two goals in the space of 88 first-half seconds and, when Abbott converted Andy Holdsworth's brilliant through ball with 68 minutes on the clock, it was the first time Town had scored three times in three successive matches since December 2000, when Crewe, Wolves and Nottingham Forest were spectacularly put to the sword.
This wasn't quite so impressive, but there was enough in a gritty, workmanlike performance to suggest Town can stay among the challengers, especially with Andy Booth, Efe Sodje, Danny Schofield, Jon Worthington and Rob Edwards to come back into the equation.
Jackson covered by leaving Nat Brown at right wing-back, putting Holdsworth into midfield (where he was a regular in the Academy) and giving a first League start since Hillsborough to Mendes, who was delighted to add to his midweek penalty strike against Morecambe in the LDV Vans Trophy.
While eight-goal Abbott was saluted as the `new Jon Stead' by the manager, two other players caught the eye as Town made it an unhappy homecoming for Iffy Onuora, who was presented with a play-off medal in Jackson's office after the game.
David Mirfin, already the only ever-present in the senior side, was commanding at the back while Chris Brandon was a creative driving force in midfield.
It was Brandon's fierce 28th-minute shot from Lee Fowler's quickly-taken free-kick which led to Abbott's opener - keeper Mark Paston only able to parry into the path of the onrushing striker.
And Brandon was unlucky not to score himself when, after a superb piece of interplay with Abbott, his shot cannoned off a post before being wrongly given as a corner.
At that stage, Mendes had put Town two ahead when latching onto a defensive clearance from skipper Steve Yates, giving Mark Wright a crafty nudge as he misjudged the bounce of the ball and firing right-footed past the stranded Paston.
While Merson pulled the strings for Walsall - although his defensive work was negligible - Brandon was an influence in all areas of the pitch for Town and it's no wonder Chesterfield, who are just a point and a place above them in the table, were desperate to keep him on their books.
He is proving an astute capture by Jackson and it would only have been justice had he scored when blocked on a 76th-minute break, because that effort summed up his decisive overall contribution.
There were moments of worry at the back, mostly through breakdowns in communication, because Gray handled the wet ball splendidly and all three centre-backs did well - Clarke, Yates and Mirfin all making sliding tackles worthy of note.
They had to be on their mettle because Walsall were certainly not frightened to follow Merson's lead in passing the ball and, had Fryatt been able to match Abbott's classy finishing, it might have been a different story.
Abbott is looking a very good striker right now - leading the line with strength, ingenuity and no small degree of skill.
Most importantly, he's now got eight goals in eight starts and the impudent way he took the ball around Paston for his second suggested there are many more to come.
His confidence, in fact, mirrors that of the team. Long may it continue.
MAN OF THE MATCH: Chris Brandon
Strong claims by Pav Abbott and Ian Gray but Brandon was the livewire in Town's display and, over the 90 minutes, made a decisive contribution to the outcome of the game. Excellent.
HOW THEY RATED
Ian Gray Three superb one-on-one saves to deny Matty Fryatt in the second half made him a contender for man-of-the-match award Rating: 8/10
Nat Brown Did a lot of unselfish work in defence and only let himself down with the standard of his crossing. Worked very hard Rating: 7/10
Anthony Lloyd Seemed to be the forgotten man at times as he found acres of space and hardly ever received the ball Rating: 7/10
Steve Yates Skipper of the side and made his mark early with a block on Fryatt in the box. Put ball over top for Mendes' goal Rating: 7/10
Nathan Clarke Made several telling tackles in the box before getting on the end of Merson's cross to head an own goal Rating: 7/10
David Mirfin Solid as a rock and not on the scoresheet at either end, for a change. Powerful clearances and sensible covering Rating: 7/10
Andy Holdsworth Back in his Academy position of central midfield, he supplied a brilliant pass for Abbott's second goal. Rating: 7/10
Chris Brandon Linked well with Abbott all game and was involved in just about everything for Town. He was unlucky not to score Rating: 8/10
Lee Fowler Making only his second League start of the season, he prompted well and his quick free kick set up the opener Rating: 7/10
Pawel Abbott Two well-taken goals to seal the points and take his personal tally to eight for the season. Led the line superbly Rating: 7/10
Junior Mendes Grabbed a first League goal for Town and jumped into the arms of manager Jackson to celebrate. Great stuff Rating: 7/10
Walsall: Paston, Osborn, Roper, Leitao, Merson, Wrack, Fryatt, Wright, K Taylor (D Taylor 51), Bennett, Broad (Birch 68). Subs not used: Bazeley, Emblen, Kinsella.