Over-40s League: Oddfellows Arms out of luck in late loss to high-flying Billingham

Willow Pond (stripes) take on Washington JFC Biddick Inn last week. Picture by Craig Leng
Willow Pond (stripes) take on Washington JFC Biddick Inn last week. Picture by Craig Leng
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Oddfellows Arms belied their bottom-of-the-table status by pushing Billingham Vets hard in a tight Fourth Division clash.

Oddfellows started well, giving the Teessiders plenty of problems, but restricted to long shots. They went ahead on 20 minutes, though, when Bri Wilson’s shot from the left was deflected in for an own goal.

Paul Armstrong’s sweet free-kick levelled it up, though, and Paul Thompson’s long-ranger put Billingham ahead.

Battling Oddfellows, though, equalised when some nifty footwork by Michael Lake give him the chance to score.

They were on course for only a third point of the season until the final seconds, when Rob Cooper nodded home Garry Duffie’s corner to seal a 3-2 Billingham win.

Ivy Legends stayed within a point of third-top Billingham when they secured a 1-0 victory in a hard-fought game against Trimdon Vets, thanks to a Jason Pettits strike. Trimdon’s keeper was excellent throughout.

Colonel Prior were beaten 4-1 by 100 per cent joint leaders Newcastle East End, while Durham County Strollers slipped to fourth after a 2-0 loss to Heighington Bay Horse.

Wearmouth Old Boys lost 6-2 to Shildon Grey Horse.

Easington CIU handed out a goalscoring lesson to Hartlepool Gillen Arms, cruising to a 4-0 win in Division One, thanks to four second-half strikes.

CIU were all guns blazing from the restart and scored three goals in 10 minutes. A Tigger Lyons corner was headed in at the back post by Graeme Langthorne, then Steve Adair got on the end of a lovely through ball from David Swan and placed his shot wide of the keeper.

Swan made it three heading in a David Banks cross.

With five minutes left, Easington – staying third, a point behind the top two – completed the scoring when another Lyons corner was put away again by Langthorne.

Dubmire stayed bottom after losing 4-0 to new leaders Heaton Stannington, who climbed above Wearmouth CW, 2-0 winners at Milbourne Arms, on goal difference.

Washington Sandpiper thrashed St Mary’s College 5-0 to sit fourth on their own, two points clear of Grindon Broadway, who were held 0-0 by Ferryhill Greyhound.

Red House WMC stayed third in the Premier Division despite losing 2-1 at Billingham Swan, though they now trail the top two – Marden and Hartlepool Touchdown – by seven points..

Penshaw Catholic Club turned on the style to sink Blyth Sea Horse 4-0 away from home to rise to sixth place, moving above Ryhope Foresters, who were beaten 2-0 at Tudhoe Black Horse.

Steels King Bros secured only their second victory, edging a 1-0 win over bottom club South Shields.

In Division Two, Durham Stonebridge twice came from behind to beat Hartlepool Catholic Club 3-2, with a free-kick levelling at 1-1 before two corners in the final 10 minutes won the day, keeping them third.

Hylton CW suffered a second straight defeat to Blakelaw SC, going down 4-1 away for a quicker 8-1 double header loss.

Second-top Seaham maintained their superb form, beating Peterlee Helford 3-0 for a sixth win in seven, while Horden Sportsmans were thumped 7-1 at CSSC Darsley Park and Mill View SC recorded an excellent 3-2 victory at Cobblers Hall, their first of the season lifting them off the bottom, above Helford on goal difference.

Blue House impressed again as they stormed to a fine 4-1 Third Division victory at Hartlepool Stag & Monkey.

They sit a point behind Wingate Cons, who edged past Rolls-Royce 2-1. Washington JFC Biddick Inn squeezed home 4-3 against lowly battlers Willow Pond and Oddies won 3-1 at Boldon Colliery Tavern, while Houghton Cricket were sunk 5-2 by visitors Richmond Town.

The Philadelphia started strongly at Wallsend Winstons, but the hosts never looked back after Chris Arnott smashed home an opportunist opening goal.

Richardson set up Arnott for his second, then Aidan Hughes headed home Tom Rantoul’s corner. Phili responded on the restart, but could not force a way back into the game and Rantoul’s sublime chip late on sealed a 4-0 Winstons success.