Relegated Chester-le-Street enjoyed only their second home win of the season, coming from behind to beat visitors Dunston UTS 2-1.
The depleted visitors took the lead after 31 minutes, when Dan Capewell headed home, but the Cestrians equalised 10 minutes late, courtesy of Alex White’s direct free-kick.
In the second half, Chester goalkeeper Jack Wilson produced a magnificent penalty save before, with four minutes remaining, Kieran Megran scored the winner with a great shot from 25 yards.
Washington, without playing, slipped back to fourth-bottom spot and are now just a point above the drop zone.
West Auckland leapfrogged the Mechanics with a hard-earned 1-0 victory at Newcastle Benfield, but they are only two points above third-bottom Guisborough Town.
The winner came on 16 minutes, when Kerry Hedley squared the ball to Zak Boagey and, from 20 yards, he chipped home.
Delighted West manager Mark Hudson said: “Since I’ve taken over in the last few games, we were having a bad run with too many losses. Today, every single player stepped up to the plate and gave everything I could have asked for and more.
“We needed a good result and we got one with only our second clean sheet all season.”
Benfield manager Craig Heward said: “That’s the worst we’ve played all season - we were terrible from the start to finish, with too many players who didn’t want to know.”
Third-bottom Guisborough kept up their late-season surge to move within a point of Washington, with both sides having two games to play.
David Onions headed a 55th-minute opener for the Priorymen to set up a storming 4-0 victory away to Penrith.
Onions missed a penalty, buy Steven Roberts converted another spot-kick to double the lead on 73 minutes.
Two goals in two minutes completed the win, Louis Goldsack scoring from a tight angle and seconds later scoring again, to make it 4-0. Penrith had Adam Main red-carded for a second bookable offence.
In the relegation run-in, Washington visit Morpeth Town on Wednesday and Ryhope CW on Saturday. Guisborough host Marske today and South Shields on Saturday, while West Auckland entertain Jarrow Roofing tomorrow and Shildon on Saturday.
South Shields’ 32-game winning run came to an end, when they were just 60 seconds away from winning the title.
A dramatic last-minute goal from Morpeth Town’s Mark Davison ensured a 1-1 draw at Mariners Park, keeping alive Morpeth’s slim title chance.
Shields took a third-minute lead, Carl Finnigan heading past goalkeeper Karl Dryden, but Davison silenced the 2,054 crowd, nodding in a Sean Taylor corner in the 90th minute.
Shields will win the title with a victory at Ashington tomorrow night.
Shildon beat Consett 6-3 in a nine-goal thriller at Dean Street.
Matty Robson’s penalty gave the fourth-top Railwaymen the lead, with Lewis Wing’s spectacular 44th-minute free-kick doubling the advantage right on half-time.
Jordan Lavery got one back for Consett at the start of the second half, but Sam Hodgson quickly made it 3-1 to Shildon.
Daniel Craggs’ powerful header cut the deficit on 79 minutes, but Wing’s second goal of the game soon had the gap back to two goals.
Adam Burnicle made it 5-2 in the 85th minute, but just a minute later Consett pulled another goal back through Lewis Teasdale. Mickey Rae completed the scoring when he smashed Shildon’s sixth goal into the bottom corner.
Newton Aycliffe and Bishop Auckland served up a 1-1 derby draw.
Ben Wood fired Aycliffe ahead from 20 yards in just the fifth minute, but Bishops levelled on the half hour, when John Jury converted in a goalmouth scramble.
Marske United and Ashington also played out a 1-1 draw.
The visitors took the lead in the seventh minute, when Ben Harmison headed home a corner.
United equalised in the 53rd minute, Peter Bulmer rifling the ball home from 15 yards out.
In the 65th minute, Ashington’s Paul Antony was dismissed for his second yellow card offence.