Eppleton fell just short of a stunning Premier Division victory in a thrilling finish at Tynemouth.
The home side made a daunting 225-7 in 54 overs as their top five batsmen all made decent contributions, led by Sam Dinning (76, with nine fours, off 150 balls) and Andrew Smith (56).
Piers Davison was the stand-out bowler, taking 3-50, with Jandre Erasmus, Dean Musther and Joe Coyne also striking.
Eppleton also had a good time with the bat, and they were very close to victory, only to miss out by just two runs as their 56-over innings ended on 224-7.
Coyne top-scored with seven fours in a 77-ball 57, while opener Marcus Brown made 49, with five fours, off 143 balls. Alex Simpson added 30, Craig Scurr 29, with three fours and two sixes, and Erasmus 17.
Tahir Khan plundered 3-67 for Tynemouth and Ryan Macciocchi took 2-63.
Hetton Lyons posted a fine total of 238-7 only for hosts Benwell Hill to claim a three-wicket win near the close.
Shaun Birbeck fired four fours and a six in a top-scoring 55 for Lyons, off 72 balls, while Josh Coughlin had four fours and two sixes in a 22-ball 40.
Dominic Thomson added 37, Chris Martin 32, Jarvis Clay 26 and Robert Talbot 26.
Sameet Brar and Kyle Coetzer both took two wickets.
Coughlin impressed with the ball in Benwell Hill’s response, but his 4-50 was not enough to prevent a defeat for Lyons as Coetzer (68, with seven boundaries) and James Schofield (61, with nine fours) had a decisive 94-run partnership before Mark Dale hit 25.
Ben Whitehead took 2-43 and Victor Spencer 1-33.
Whitburn clung on determinedly for a vital ‘losing draw’ against bottom club South Shields.
It keeps them 16 points above the sole relegation place with just three matches to play.
Shields were 43-3 before Salman Ahmed (93, with 10 fours and a six, off 130 balls) and Michael Dunn (51, with six fours, off 122 balls) put on 114 for the fourth wicket.
Keelan Clements (17) and Matthew Muchall (13) helped them declare on 196-9 after 55.3 overs.
Ian Elliot took 3-56 and Paul Shields 3-30 for Whitburn, while Elliott Hearn bagged 2-50.
The Villagers were 58-4, but Brydon Carse (66, with eight fours and a six, off 69 balls) and Ross Carty (40 off 86 balls), added 49 for the fifth wicket. Wickets kept tumbling, though, and Whitburn were relieved to see out the draw, hanging on at 165-9 as the 54th over ended. Andrew Turns added 19.
Ahmed led Shields’ bowlers with 3-39, backed by Sam Embleton (2-40) and Dunn (2-19).
Chester-le-Street’s sixth win of the season, by eight wickets against Durham Academy, moved them above the youngsters into fourth place.
Scott Steel led the way for the Academy with nine fours and two sixes in a 70-ball 68, but they were dismissed for 153 in 45.4 overs.
Matty Potts added 33 off 61 balls, with Jack McCarthy adding 14 and Chris McBride 13.
Quentin Hughes was Chester’s top bowler, with 4-29 in 15 overs, backed by Andrew Smith (3-17).
A 116-run first-wicket partnership between Kyle Davis (71, with 10 fours, off 96 balls) and George Harrison (54, with eight fours, off 68 deliveries) set up the Cestrians’ success, with Hughes adding an unbeaten 16 to see them over the line.
Faizan Hussain took 2-44 in vain.
Leaders South Northumberland outgunned Felling by 141 runs as John Graham made 40 to become only the second player to reach 10,000 NEPL runs.
Club-mate Simon Birtwisle is just 45 away from joining him.
Marcus North (56), Calum MacLeod (42) and skipper Adam Cragg (42no) also shone in South North’s 238-5.
Felling were all out for 97 as Michael Craigs took 5-26. Mark Turner hit 36.
Newcastle were five-wicket winners at Stockton but had a point deducted for a slow over-rate.
The Teessiders were all out for 158, despite 68 from Joe Hewison, as Sean Tindale grabbed 5-50 in 15 overs.
Durham’s Cameron Steel then hit seven fours and a six in 45 as Newcastle sealed their victory, Ben McGee adding 28. George Harding and Matthew Gill both struck twice.