Schalke 'keeper Manuel Neuer stood tall and proud between the posts in the scoreless draw with BVB.
From the opening kick-off, a highly energized Dortmund side laid siege to Neuer's goal. Within the opening seven minutes, Jakub 'Kuba' Blaszczykowski had a close-ranged effort denied by an excellent save, and Mario Goetze also failed to beat the Germany #1 when through on goal.
Even center half Mats Hummels had a chance following a set play, but his audacious overhead volley was caught by the diving Neuer.
Dortmund were all over their visitors for the majority of the first half, and although Schalke eventually stabilized somewhat in defense, die Knappen rarely were able to find their way into their attacking half. Kuba had another chance fall to his feet on 21 minutes after a failed clearance, but once again, Neuer made the decisive stop.
Arguably the best chance of the half came in the 35th minute, when Goetze played a clever flick to Lucas Barrios, but the Paraguay striker put his shot wide under pressure from Christoph Metzelder.
After the half-time break, Schalke looked a much improved side in terms of work rate, and their hosts' inability to capitalize left them in the running to earn three points. Barrios badly missed another clear chance on 51 minutes, and four minutes later had another effort strike the post. Bender also tested Neuer with a fine volley, but the 'keeper was well placed to make the save.
As the second half wore on, the visitors looked increasingly dangerous. Jefferson Farfan caught Felipe Santana napping as he fired over the bar, and Jose Jurado was denied by the extended leg of goalkeeper Roman Weidenfeller.
Seconds later, the magnificent Neuer sprinted off his line to make an outstanding block when Robert Lewandowski looked to chip him for the winner. Then, five minutes from full time, Goetze became the second Dortmund man to hit the woodwork after doing all the hard work to take down a lobbed pass and round Neuer.
Dortmund remain first in the league following the draw, and increase their lead to 12 points ahead of Leverkusen. The result sees Schalke advance as well; die Koenigsblauen move ninth, with 26 points from 21 matches.
Follow Goal.com on to get the latest soccer news directly. Check out Goal.com's page; be part of the best soccer fan community in the world!