Blue House won the day in their Kip Watson Villa Real Cup tie against Third Division rivals The Philadelphia – but were left hanging on at the end.
Phili started brightly and table-topping Blue House were fortunate not to have a player sent off.
Blue House caught The Philadelphia napping and Gary Shields was allowed to score from just inside the area, then Martin Swales doubled the lead from the spot at the second attempt after a brilliant save by Brian Teasdale.
Things did not improve for the visitors in the second half and Phili were soon 3-0 down, but the setback only ignited The Philadelphia and, after some good approach play, Paul Russell beat his marker and smashed the ball across the home keeper and into the bottom corner of the net.
This put Blue House on the back foot and Phili pulled another goal back, with Alan Jones latching onto a through ball and beating the keeper, coming in from the left wing.
Phili had a couple of half-chances in the dying minutes, but Blue House stayed strong to win 3-2.
Rolls-Royce made good progress with a 3-0 win over Sedgefield Black Lion.
It was goalless at the break after a tight first half, but Rolls played much better in the second half and enjoyed two good goals by Davy White and a screamer from Wayne Browell to steer them through.
South Shields Catholic Club went through against Trimdon Vets, winning 4-3 on penalties after a 2-2 draw.
Wallsend Winstons edged through 2-1 after extra time against Darsley Park, thanks to fine strikes from Barkas and Hughes, with Bobby Richardson replying.
In the Premier Division, Penshaw Catholic Club fought back from a goal down to level against Hartlepool Touchdown after a poor back pass, but the visitors regained control to run out 3-1 winners.
Red House WMC maintained their fine form with a 2-1 victory over Darlington Shuttle & Loom to consolidate fourth place.
Steels King Bros endured a sixth defeat, going down 1-0 at Billingham Swan, while Ryhope Foresters were beaten 2-0 at Cramlington Burton House.
Hebburn fielded a weakened team, with two over-60s, but made life tough for leaders Marden, who were flattered by their 4-1 victory. Tony Robinson replied to strikes from Paul Copley, Peter Kirkham and Steve Hart (2) .
Grindon Broadway lost out 5-3 in an excellent First Division game at Heaton Stannington, when their play perhaps deserved a point.
Grindon could not get out of their half for the first 20 minutes and Heaton capitalised, Preen scoring a third-minute opener.
Alan Ridley levelled as Grindon came back strongly, and their pressure paid off with a second-half Cliff strike, only for Cripwell to quickly equalise at 2-2.
Moore’s quicker double steered Heaton 4-2 up, but Cliff struck as Grindon roared back, but they were killed off by a Kitchen strike late on.
Third-top Wearmouth CW got back to winning ways, bagging a 20th-minute goal to sink Hartlepool Gillen Arms 1-0.
Second-top Washington Sandpiper won 3-1 at Consett and Easington CIU, in fourth, pipped lowly Pelton Crown 2-1.
Bottom club Dubmire lost 2-1 to visitors St Mary’s College.
Durham County Strolers won through in the Kip Watson Villa Real Cup, pipping Hartlepool Catholic Club 5-4 on penalties following an entertaining 3-3 draw after extra time.