Two late strikes from Maksim Kanunnikov and Danny ensured Zenit St Petersburg were able to maintain their four-point lead at the top of the table following victory at Amkar Perm.
The 2007 Russian champions looked like they would be held by the strugglers until substitute Kanunnikov popped up to score five minutes from the end, before Danny added a second a minute from time.
It meant CSKA Moscow and Rubin Kazan were unable to make any ground after they both also won. CSKA thrashed Terek Grozny 4-1 after the capital club had fallen behind to Blagoy Georgiev's 26th-minute opener.
CSKA blew the game apart, however, with four goals in 15 minutes after the break. Chidi Odiah levelled two minutes after the interval, Mark Gonzalez then put them ahead six minutes later before an Alan Dzagoev double after 57 and 62 minutes tied up the points. Odiah was sent off after 70 minutes but it mattered little.
Rubin Kazan were 2-0 winners at Rostov following goals from Sergei Semak and Alexander Bukharov, while fourth-placed Spartak Moscow suffered a 5-2 hammering at Alania Vladikavkaz.
The scores were level at 2-2 at the break before Georgi Gabulov put Alania ahead, with his second goal of the game after 68 minutes. Asen Hubulov and Ivan Stoyanov completed the scoring late on.
Sibir Novosibirsk climbed off the foot of the table with a comfortable 4-1 win at home to Krylya Sovetov. The visitors were ahead after a sixth-minute strike from Sergei Tkachev but Tomas Cizek equalised two minutes later. Sibir Novosibirsk then ran away with the match with further goals from Aleksei Medvedev, Arunas Klimavicius and Maxim Astafiev.