Wood, on loan from West Brom, broke the deadlock a minute before the break with a well-taken penalty after defender Daniel Batth pulled Glenn Murray to the ground.
Bennett sealed the victory in emphatic style with an unstoppable drive from the edge of the area 16 minutes from time after good work by Spanish defender Inigo Calderon.
The Seagulls finished with 10 men following the sending-off in the last minute of skipper Gordon Greer, who received a straight red card following an off-the-ball incident.
Lively winger Bennett was almost on target again when he shot just wide late on.
Southampton climbed into the automatic promotion places with a 2-0 win over Leyton Orient.
The visitors made the game safe two minutes from time when Lambert found Lee Barnard with a right-wing cross and the striker applied a cool finish from 10 yards out.
Substitute Jack Hunt preserved Huddersfield's long unbeaten run with a stunning last-minute gasp equaliser to secure a 1-1 draw against Peterborough.
Hunt jinked past two defenders and blasted a low shot into the bottom left corner to stretch Town's unbeaten record to 20 matches.
Town had been staring at a first defeat since Christmas when Posh midfielder Grant McCann scored a penalty on 41 minutes after Lee Peltier felled Craig Mackial-Smith in the box.
Adam Clayton's goal in the third minute of added time earned a dramatic 3-2 win for MK Dons against Carlisle.
The Cumbrians, who won the Johnstone's Paint Trophy at Wembley last week, had led with nine minutes left but Angelo Balanta levelled before Clayton came up with his late heroics.
Nardiello netted with a close-range shot after Stewart had touched on Ryan Harley's 78th-minute cross.
He then ran onto Harley's through-ball to round goalkeeper Conrad Logan in injury time and settle the outcome.
Grecians frontman Stewart was a 66th-minute replacement for Richard Logan, having already announced it would be the last game of a 19-year career which began at opponents Rovers. He remained on the field at the end to receive acclaim from both sets of fans and his Exeter team-mates formed a guard of honour by the tunnel to congratulate him as he left the field.
Charlton clung on for a point despite having captain Christian Dailly sent off in the first half of their 0-0 draw at Oldham.
Dailly saw red for violent conduct but Addicks keeper John Sullivan made a string of impressive saves to deny Oldham victory.
Swindon beat Brentford 1-0 to record their first win in 19 games and give their survival hopes a boost.
Striker Calvin Andrew's 80th-minute strike was the difference between two shot-shy sides in a game that looked set to drift towards a bore draw.
A last-minute strike from Adam McGurk earned Tranmere a dramatic 2-1 win at Bournemouth - moments after fellow sub Danny Ings thought he had salvaged a point for the Cherries.
Ings cancelled out Ian Goodison's opener with a stunning overhead kick in injury time but McGurk won it for relegation-threatened Tranmere seconds before the final whistle.
Ian Henderson came off the bench to score a late winner as Colchester dented Rochdale's play-off hopes with a 1-0 victory.
Henderson planted a shot past Owain Fon Williams and into the net from close range with four minutes to go, despite Craig Dawson's desperate attempts to keep it out.
Danny Green bagged a brace as Dagenham climbed out of the bottom four at Notts County's expense with a 3-1 win.
John Akinde put the hosts in front after 16 minutes when he volleyed home Green's first-time cross from close range to claim his first goal for the club.
Jon Nurse was through on goal when he was dragged down on the edge of the box by last-man Graeme Lee and the defender received a straight red card.
From the resulting free-kick Green doubled his side's lead, and County's misery was compounded on the stoke of half-time when John Spicer conceded a penalty for a foul on Akinde and Green kept his cool to score from 12 yards.
The visitors notched a consolation when substitute Njogu Demba-Nyren headed home Spicer's corner but County stumbled to their seventh straight defeat.
Hartlepool beat Yeovil for the third time this season with a comfortable 3-1 win at Victoria Park.
Yeovil took the lead after 10 minutes with a stunning strike. Jon Obika turned and hooked a volley from 30 yards over goalkeeper Scott Flinders into the top corner of the net.
Adam Boyd latched onto a loose ball to level things just moments later as he crashed home his first goal since August.
But Pools scored a second goal in the 62nd minute with skipper Sam Collins meeting a Leon McSweeney corner to send a low shot through a crowded penalty area and into the net, while substitute Colin Larkin had only been on the pitch a matter of seconds when he scored with his first touch, knocking a low shot in at the near post to secure the points.
Plymouth super-sub Rory Patterson sealed a 2-0 win over relegation rivals Walsall.
The hosts deservedly took the lead in the 51st minute through livewire winger Yannick Bolasie.
And Patterson outpaced Matt Richards from the halfway line to tuck away Argyle's 88th-minute winner for the basement side.