Northern League: Freeman screamer seals thrilling Easington success

David Paul fires home for Easington Colliery (green) in Saturday's dramatic clash with Alnwick Town. Picture by Kevin Brady
David Paul fires home for Easington Colliery (green) in Saturday's dramatic clash with Alnwick Town. Picture by Kevin Brady
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Easington Colliery moved up to sixth position after an exciting 4-3 Second Division win over Alnwick Town on Saturday.

Paul Frame’s men made it two wins in a row, showing character to come from 2-1 down to complete a league double.

Easington Colliery (green) battle against Alnwick Town on Saturday. Picture by Kevin Brady

Easington Colliery (green) battle against Alnwick Town on Saturday. Picture by Kevin Brady

Michael Bulmer put the Colliers a 13th-minute lead, with a smart finish from 12 yards following a good run and pass from the lively Brennan Ball.

But Tony Brown equalised from the penalty spot, with keeper Ethan Anderson getting a hand on the ball but unable to keep out the strike.

Striker Sammy Perez put the visitors ahead midway through the second half, against the run of play, shooting under Anderson.

But Easington rallied well, with Bryan Norton playing a fine ball in for David Paul, who slotted home to make it 2-2.

The game could have gone either way at this stage. Substitute Norton’s deflected strike put the Colliers 3-2 up, with keeper Luc Glasper stranded, but, just two minutes later, Perez scored his second of the game, after a goal-kick was flicked into the box.

Easington, though, ensured all three points in style late on. The ball bounced on the edge of the box and substitute Chris Freeman pounced to take a touch and fire a 20-yard shot into the corner of the net for a dramatic winner.

Tow Law Town were well beaten at Hebburn Town, going down 4-1 as an excellent crowd of 452 turned out to back the troubled home club.

Hebburn opened the scoring in the second minute, when Channon North crossed for striker Jason Blackburn to rifle the ball home past goalkeeper Robbie Anderson.

However, Tow Law equalised in the 13th minute, when Michael Gibson headed past goalkeeper Lee Burrell.

After 33 minutes, North made it 2-1, powering the ball home, following a flick-on from a long throw.

Eight minutes later, Blackburn scored his second goal of the match when he turned his defender off the ball and finished well, giving Hebburn a 3-1 lead.

In the second half, Glen Hargrave was shown a straight red card on 67 minutes for dissent, but this did not deter the home side, who increased their advantage when North scored his second after 70 minutes, blasting home a fierce strike.

Lawyers boss Steve Murray said: “I am very disappointed with the overall performance and the result, but delighted for Hebburn Town and how things have turned out for them today.

“Everyone at our club wishes them all the best for the future.”

Hebburn Town bossScott Oliver said: “It was obviously a good game for us and it was nice to play well in front of such a big crowd. That’s what it’s all about for the town and hopefully they will come back to watch us at the next game.”

In the division’s match of the day, Stockton Town hammered promotion hopefuls Billingham Town 4-0 at Bishopton Road West and are now top on goal difference, from Team Northumbria, whose match was called off.

Stockton’s Adam Nicholson opened the scoring after 21 minutes, when he beat two defenders before firing past goalkeeper Alex Leeds.

The game remained tight until Stockton doubled their lead on 61 minutes, when Nicholson headed home his second goal of the game.

Billingham Town were killed off by a third goal in the 81st minute, when a long ball found Joe Carter, who headed over the keeper and into the net.

In the last minute, substitute Sonni Coleman scored from close range to complete a 4-0 victory.

Fourth-top Billingham Town are now six points adrift of third-top neighbours Billingham Synthonia, and have just one game in hand now.

Synthonia stayed in third position, courtesy of another narrow 1-0 victory, this time over Durham City, who are now 12 points adrift of a promotion slot and have played two games more.

Following a tight and goalless first half at Central Avenue, Synthonia’s Austin Johnston was shown a straight red card for use of the elbow in the 56th minute.

However, this did not deter them and, four minutes later, they went ahead, with what proved to be the only goal of the game.

A corner from the right produced a goalmouth scramble and eventually the ball fell to midfieldr Anthony Peacock, who smashed the ball home, giving City keeper Dean Caris no chance.

Darlington RA will be chuffed with their narrow 1-0 win at fellow strugglers Thornaby.

RA are just five points behind their hosts now and they moved off the foot of the table with their success, although Thornaby do have a couple of games in hand.

The winning goal came after 52 minute, when a cross from the left found striker Chris Tarn free in the box, and he fired through goalkeeper Adrian Beblowski’s legs to claim the three points and lift RA to second-bottom spot.

Esh Winning, whose game was postponed, are now back at the bottom.

Darlington RA host Billingham Synthonia tomorrow, while Tow Law host Blyth Town.

On Wednesday, lowly rivals Crook Town and Willington clash at the Millfield, while Durham City head to Heaton Stannington and Ryton and Crawcrook Albion welcome Northallerton.