Northern League: Larkin at the double to seal derby delight for Sunderland RCA
Sunderland RCA rose back up to seventh place in Division One thanks to a comfortable 3-0 home derby victory over Seaham Red Star.
All three goals came within a 17-minute spell, either side of half-time and included a sending off for Red Star’s Lee Chapman, who received two yellow cards four minutes apart.
Colin Larkin started the ball rolling at Meadow Park, scoring from the penalty spot after 38 minutes.
Nathan O’Neill headed home the second goal, two minutes later.
Larkin scored his second 10 minutes after half-time, with a near-post header beating goalkeeper Jordan Harkess, to seal the win, avenging a 4-3 away defeat earlier in the season.
RCA manager Martin Swales said: “I am delighted with the result. We had a bad result during the week at Ashington, so it was nice to get back to winning ways.
“It was a local derby and I am delighted with the players’ performance. It is always good to get three points at home, a great win and a great weekend!”
RCA visit Dunston UTS tomorrow.
Sixth-bottom Ryhope CW bolstered their survival chances with a very important 3-0 win at Team Northumbria, and it was a doubly crucial win as Jarrow Roofing and Penrith all posted victories.
James Ellis broke the deadlock in the 13th minute, when he finished well, and two second half goals from Michael Rae and Paul Braithwaite finished off Team North.
Ryhope remain five points clear of the relegation trapdoor and travel to Roofing tomorrow night, for a massive six-pointer game.
Gary Pearson’s men, with games in hand on all of their rivals in the bottom half of the table, still have 14 league matches to play.
Washington showed that they have not given up on their fight for survival.
They journeyed to Guisborough Town and kept alive their very slim chances of survival with a 3-0 win at the King George V Ground.
A brilliant seven-minute spell, just before half-time, ensured the three points for the Mechanics, although they are still 15 points from safety.
Josh Allan and Vinny Gash scored two in two minutes, then Kieran Broomfield added a third to complete just their fourth win of the season, leaving the Priorymen just eight points from the bottom three.
The Mechanics are away to Newton Aycliffe tomorrow.
Bishop Auckland dropped to fourth-bottom spot after a 3-1 defeat at Consett, who climbed to second place.
Bishops are sliding into trouble, with only one win in six and are just three points above the drop zone.
They took a sixth-minute lead through David Richardson’s header, but Consett levelled through Jordan Lavery and quickly went ahead following Michael Sweet’s penalty.
Late on, substitute Joshua Gray made it 3-1 to the Steelmen.
West Auckland thrashed bottom club Billingham Synthonia 6-0 to go third, with Nathan Fisher in brilliant form, bagging five of the goals either side of half-time.
Mark Doninger completed the rout in the final minute.
Shildon held leadersMorpeth Town to a 1-1 draw.
Adam Gell fired the Railwaymen in front as early as the third minute, following good work from Billy Greulich-Smith. The visitors equalised in the second half, when Joe Walton won a penalty and he converted from the spot.
Dunston UTS edged a 2-1 win over Newton Aycliffe thanks to Liam Thear’s goal after 13 minutes and a Dale Burrell strike, a minute before half-time.
Aycliffe pulled one back with a quarter of an hour to go, through Andrew Grant-Soulsby, but UTS held on for the win.
Jarrow Roofing claimed three crucial points in their survival fight, when they defeated Ashington 2-0.
After half an hour, Liam Anderson was fouled in the box and Dennis Knight made no mistake from the spot.
Knight claimed his second goal midway through the second half, with a low drive past keeper Conor Grant.
Penrith also claimed a welcome victory, following an excellent 3-1 win at home to Whitley Bay.
A hat-trick from Martyn Coleman, with three great strikes including a penalty, did the damage, with Peter Glen-Ravenhill levelling at 1-1.
* Stockton Town will face Hellenic League side Thatcham Town in the Buildbase FA Vase final on May 20.
The Anchors lost their semi-final second leg 2-1 at home to Marske United, but progressed 3-2 on aggregate.
Marske started well and cut their deficit after just eight minutes when Liam O’Sullivan beat advancing goalkeeper Michael Arthur to open the scoring.
Resolute Stockton kept their composure and levelled right on half-time when Kevin Hayes was upended in the box and Nathan Mulligan kept his head to smash his penalty ast goalkeeper Robert Dean.
United regained the lead with a great second-half strike, James Fairley going on a brilliant run evading a few tackles and finishing with aplomb.
In a frenetic finale, keeper Arthur made a great save to keep out Curtis Round’s goalbound header, then Marske’s Josh Rowbotham had a goal disallowed for a foul.
Hayes and Sonni Coleman missed good chances to ease the tension for Stockton, but the home side held firm at the back to edge through on aggregate, despite the second-leg loss.
Thatcham won 3-2 at 1874 Northwich in their second leg to progress 4-2 on aggregate.