It is onwards and upwards, according to Sunderland RCA manager Martin Swales following his side’s stunning victory over Washington at Meadow Park on Saturday.
An ebullient Swales, who took over a year ago when the Wearsiders had just one point, claimed after RCA’s thrilling 4-2 victory: “The place is absolutely buzzing and the lads are delighted with a great win.
“It was their first defeat and it was great to win the derby.
“I wasn’t greatly surprised since, in our two previous games, we had beaten reigning champions Marske United and drawn with another top-six side, Guisborough Town.”
Swales’ side made a dream start, scoring through Michael Charlton with barely a minute on the clock.
Joe Melvin made it two on 43 minutes, but there was still time before the interval for Conor Okus to throw the previously unbeaten Mechanics a lifeline.
Steven Hutchinson’s side made a strong start to the second period, but RCA weathered the storm and Melvin made it 3-1.
For a second time, Washington reduced the deficit, this time with a Mark Davison strike, and a frenetic final 15 minutes ensued.
But, right at the death, Adam Drysdale blasted home to complete a memorable 4-2 home victory.
The Wearsiders are now up to fourth – their highest position for a long time.
RCA must wait until the weekend for their next game, at home to Durham City, but Washington will look to regain winning ways when they entertain Marske United at the Nissan Sports Complex tomorrow night.
Shildon, 2-0 winners over North Shields with strikes by Daniel Moore and Paul Connor, lead the table by a couple of points from Morpeth Town, who impressed in a fine 2-0 success at Marske United, with ex-Sunderland reserve Sean Taylor and Michael Chilton netting.
Seaham Red Star twice led before succumbing 3-2 to Whitley Bay.
Liam McBryde fired Mark Collingwood’s men into a first-minute lead and, after Liam Hudson levelled, Dan Robinson made it 2-1.
Before the interval, however, Red Star conceded a penalty which Adam Shanks converted and, with 15 minutes left, Shanks headed in Bay’s winner.
Durham City left it late before defeating third-bottom Norton and Stockton Ancients 2-0, thanks to two goals from James Fairley in the final 15 minutes.
Michael Sweet netted a consolation for Consett, who were well beaten, 3-1 at Dunston UTS, who had Malky Morien (2) and Scott Martingale on target.
Paul Chow’s double earned Jarrow Roofing’s 2-0 win at bottom club West Auckland, who had Paul Seaton sent off.