DESPITE twice equalising, Sunderland RCA eventually went down 4-2 to Billingham Synthonia in Saturday’s Ebac Northern League First Division game at Meadow Park.
Early pressure by the visitors was rewarded on 23 minutes when Nathan Porritt curled a left-foot shot into the top corner of the net, but, within 10 minutes, RCA were level as Gavin Barton stabbed the ball home.
Right on the stroke of half-time, the home defence gifted Synners their second goal. A poor back pass had goalkeeper Peter Jameson struggling and ex-Middlesbrough reserve Porritt took advantage to slam the ball into the net.
Neil Hixon’s side hit back a second time and again Barton was the scorer, completing a lovely flowing move by lobbing the ball over the head of goalkeeper James Briggs.
Within three minutes though, RCA were once more chasing the game. Barton headed away from David Alderson, but the assistant referee flagged that the ball had indeed crossed the line.
Porritt then completed his hat-trick with a superb free-kick into the top corner of the net.
Thereafter, although RCA had half-chances they never seriously threatened to get back into the game.
Durham City conceded their unbeaten record to Consett, who won more easily than the 4-3 scoreline might suggest.
Before the hour was up, City trailed by three goals, with Luke Sullivan (2) and Aristote Guerin Lakonga on target for the Steelmen.
Matthew Scott pulled a goal back, but the visitors restored the three-goal advantage as Sullivan beat goalkeeper James Winter for a second time.
With five minutes left on the clock, Joe Hughes cut the deficit, but it was not until the last minute that Scott netted again and by then it was too late for City to save the game.
Billingham Town – the only team in both divisions without a point – crashed to an 8-1 mauling at home to Ashington whose marksmen were Glen Taylor (4), David Carson, Andrew Johnson and Marc Walton (2).
Surprisingly, Stephen Flockett had given the Teessiders a first-minute lead.
Hebburn Town are second from bottom with only one point. They too suffered a heavy defeat at Shildon where they were hit for six by Paul Connor, Darren Richardson and Ben Wood, who all scored twice.