With Juventus losing at Roma and Napoli held to a draw by Sampdoria, Lazio had the opportunity to make up ground on the top two, but they did not even make a contest of it against the struggling hosts in a one-sided game at the Stadio Artemio Franchi.
Innocent Emeghara was on target twice for Giuseppe Iachini's side, while Alessandro Rosina also beat Federico Marchetti in the Lazio goal.
The visitors rallied late on, but could not even find a consolation as they warmed up for their Europa League clash with Borussia Monchengladbach on Thursday night in far from ideal fashion.
Napoli's forward line suffered from a rare lack of cutting edge and ended the day four points behind Juventus after being held to a a 0-0 draw by Sampdoria.
Sampdoria goalkeeper Sergio Romero was in particularly inspired form as Delio Rossi's men claimed another valuable point in their mission to book a second season in Serie A, with Samp spurning several chances to win through young striker Mauro Icardi.
Meanwhile, Udinese lost ground in the race for Europe after two gilt-edged chances to force a draw went begging at the end of a 1-0 defeat at Genoa.
Davide Ballardini earned his second win since replacing Luigi Del Neri as Genoa boss when Juraj Kucka nodded the hosts ahead in the first half.
Udinese had won four games from six to finally reach seventh spot last week but both Mehdi Benatia and Alexander Merkel were guilty of missing easy chances in stoppage time, allowing Catania and Roma to climb above the Friulians for the time being.
Two goals from Marco Sau lifted Cagliari away from the Serie A relegation zone and left Pescara in real danger as the Sardinians won 2-0 at the Stadio Adriatico.
After a tight first half in which both sides took a cautious approach, understandably given the stakes, Cagliari emerged with more conviction and Sau struck twice early in the second half to earn the points.
Pescara ended the game with 10 men with Vladimir Weiss sent off in stoppage time as the home fans made their feelings heard.
The win takes them eight points clear of their hosts, who occupy the first relegation berth, four points adrift of safety.
Catania returned to contention for a European place by edging a third consecutive home victory in Serie A with a 1-0 win at the expense of struggling Bologna.
Sergio Almiron, who played on despite suffering an early knock, broke the deadlock just before half-time and the Elefanti held on to wrest seventh place back from Roma.
Bologna had won the reverse fixture 4-0 in September but failed to take their chances to widen a five-point gap above the relegation zone, with Alessandro Diamanti especially wasteful.
An 87th-minute goal by Valter Birsa guided Torino to a 2-1 victory over Atalanta as they won for the first time in four Serie A games.
Atalanta were on a poor run with just one win in nine games whileTorino entered the game with two draws and a defeat in their last three matches.
Torino went ahead three minutes before half-time when the Turin club broke quickly, Barreto found Cerci who slotted into the bottom right-hand corner.
Atalanta equalised when goalkeeper Jean-Francois Gillet fouled Marko Livaja and German Denis made no mistake from the resulting spot-kick.
Torino deservedly regained the lead three minutes from time when Matteo Darmian's right-wing cross found Birsa and he slotted home a right-footed shot from close range.
Fiorentina rejoined the hunt for a Champions League place with a resounding 4-1 win over Inter Milan at the Stadio Artemio Franchi.
Francesco Totti's second-half strike earned Roma a 1-0 victory over Serie A leaders Juventus on Saturday evening.
The former Italy playmaker unleashed an unstoppable winner in the 58th minute to lift the Eternal City club within six points of fifth-placed Inter Milan.
The result meant Juve's five-point advantage at the summit could be cut when second-placed Napoli host Sampdoria on Sunday.
In Saturday night's other game in the Italian top flight, Palermo moved off the foot of the table thanks to a 1-1 draw at Chievo in a game of two contrasting halves at the Stadio Marc'Antonio Bentegodi.
The Rosaneri took the lead in the fifth minute through Mauro Formica and it was a one-sided opening 45 minutes in which Palermo failed only to add a second goal.
Chievo responded well in the second half, though, and equalised through Cyril Thereau's penalty.
Mario Balotelli scored for the third game in a row since joining AC Milan to ensure the hosts took all three points as they beat Parma 2-1 at the San Siro.
An own goal from Gabriel Paletta gave the Rossoneri the lead in the first half before Balotelli netted his fourth goal in just three games for his new club.
Nicola Sansone scored a consolation for Parma deep in stoppage time but there was no time for the visitors to scramble what would have been an ill-deserved second.
The three points lift Milan above city rivals Inter and level on points with third-placed Lazio.
Monday's Serie A Fixture
Sunday's Serie A Results
Saturday's Serie A Results
Friday's Serie A Results