SUNDERLAND RCA became only the second side to deny Spennymoor Town maximum Ebac Northern League First Division points when they came from behind for a 1-1 draw at Meadow Park last night.
There was an early blow for Neil Hixon’s side when goalkeeper Neal Atkinson was stretchered off and replaced by Craig Shields.
Shields excelled 15 minutes later when he saved a penalty from Joe Walton but unfortunately for him the ball rebounded and Walton made no mistake at the second attempt.
Early in the second period, Moors had the chance to kill off the Wearsiders. They were awarded a second spot-kick which was this time entrusted to Wayne Phillips but his effort rebounded from the crossbar and was cleared by Ross Preston.
With 14 minutes remaining, the home side levelled as Gavin Barton, a former Spennymoor player, headed home a cross from Jamie Fryett.
The game attracted a crowd of 190, the highest of the season at Meadow Park.
Spennymoor stay second and Whitley Bay jumped into fourth place with a resounding 6-1 win over South Shields at Filtrona Park.
Lee Paul Scroggins was an early marksman but when Shaun Sweeney quickly equalised, the hopes of the Mariners rose.
Paul Chow though regained the advantage for the Seahorses and in the second half Whitley romped home with four goals in 12 minutes from Chow, Paul Robinson, Ash Davis and Lee Kerr, with the best goal of the seven.
There was also a goals fest at Bedford Terrace where Billingham Town recovered from a 4-1 deficit to gain a draw with third-top Bedlington Terriers.
Steve Bowie and Mark Doninger each bagged a brace of goals for Terriers with Glen Butterworth (3) and Danny Wray on target for the Teessiders.
Seaham Red Star are equal on points with fifth-placed Crook Town in Division Two after seeing off the challenge from neighbours Horden CW.
Two goals by Mark Catcheside and Ivan Stoyanov in the space of two early first-half minutes had the visitors on the back foot and it was all over for them 13 minutes from time as Paul Cane converted a penalty.
Birtley Town went down to Ryton and Crawcrook Albion for whom Robert Ruddick scored the only goal in the 75th minute.
Chester-le-Street trailed Whickham for more than an hour at The Glebe. Scot Goldsmith-Scott was a seventh-minute scorer with a clinical finish past Cestrian goalkeeper Nick Ling and 20 minutes from the end Keiran McDonald equalised with a back-post header.
Alnwick Town remain rooted to the bottom after losing 4-0 to West Allotment Celtic whose matchwinners were Mark Allen, Ian Dunn, Mark Dummitt and Dean Lee.
Durham City, fourth-from-bottom in Division One, made it back-to-back wins and progressed to the second round of the Brooks Mileson Memorial Cup.
Oliver Hodgkiss (pen), Dan Madden and James Winter had the tie just about won before Martin Coleman claimed a late consolation for Penrith.