Benfield’s late agony keeps RCA alive

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SUNDERLAND RCA are clinging on to survival in the Ebac Northern League First Division following Newcastle Benfield’s 3-1 defeat at Penrith last night.

The Tynesiders would have relegated RCA with a win, and they led on 27 minutes when Stephen Young turned in the box and coolly slotted home.

But Stephen Rigg equalised from close range six minutes later, after a good move. A point would have been left Benfield six points clear of RCA, but they conceded twice in the final 10 minutes, with Kevin Holliday and Connolly on target.

RCA and Benfield both have two games to play. Benfield are five points ahead and have a better goal difference of four.

Wembley-bound Spennymoor Town eased to a 3-0 victory over Hebburn Town with a much-changed side. Tom Bott, signed on loan from Bradford City just before the deadline, celebrated his debut with a brace and Chris Lawler also notched.

West Auckland will end fourth after a dour 0-0 draw with Shildon, for whom Ben Wood headed against the woodwork. West’s John Campbell also hit the post.

Seaham Red Star denied Jarrow Roofing promotion to Division One when they signed off for the season with a fighting 3-3 draw.

It looked as if Roofing were romping into the top flight when they led inside 10 minutes courtesy of David Carson and Darren Palmer.

But Red Star staged a magnificent rally, scoring three times through Channon North (2) and Craig Malley to lead at half-time.

With only 15 minutes remaining, Anthony Myers equalised, but Roofing were unable to find the winning goal which would have taken them back into Division One.

Instead, Morpeth Town are promoted on goal difference from Roofing. They thumped Brandon United 4-1 to finish third, with Stephen Anderson (2), Michael Chilton and Ashley McAlpine netting. James Davidson replied.

Esh Winning finish third bottom after losing 3-2 to Stokesley SC, who won with a last-minute Derek Bradley penalty. Craig Coates and Darren Morton struck for Esh.