Greg Abbott saluted his central-defenders after Carlisle nabbed a 2-1 win at Hartlepool.
Former Pools midfielder Matty Robson scored an 85th-minute winner but Abbott felt Peter Murphy and Mike Edwards set the standard.
"We always felt we could be in the game at 1-0 and the energy and determination kept us going, it can see us though the season," said the Cumbrians boss.
"The togetherness was there, fans included. It's a tough season, things happened over the summer to hold us back, but from top to bottom we stick together. It would be nice to be a Sheffield United and buy three, four big players - but we scrap and fight and nick results.
"The two centre-halves were outstanding. Steve Howard was a real problem and they coped to keep it at one.
"We asked the centre halves to be tough - they were.
"Peter Murphy went off with a cut forehead and, for his good looks it will upset him - for a centre half he is far too handsome."
Pools boss Neale Cooper said: "We deserved more, we had chances to win by a few goals, but never took them. It's hard to shout and scream, that's some of the best football we have played for a long time.
"But we went chasing the game at 1-0 when we didn't need to - we had chances. They have to manage the play better, it gets broken down, they counter attack and there's no-one in the central area. It's got to be organised out there.
"People say they know it, but they should act on it. We had a man sent off and the game swung completely."
- Greg Abbott
- Matty Robson