SHILDON stretched their lead at the top of the Ebac Northern League First Division to six points with last night’s comfortable 3-0 victory over Newton Aycliffe, writes MALCOLM PRATT.
Lee Paul Scroggins was again among the goals, giving Shildon a 10th-minute lead with a low 25-yarder which flashed past Aycliffe keeper Andrew Spence.
Shildon doubled their lead with a Mark Hudson penalty, awarded after Jamie Harwood had been brought down on 53 minutes.
Two minutes later, it was all over for the visitors. Craig Ruddy’s corner eventually found Ben Wood, who coolly slotted home from close range.
Shildon may be clear, but second-top Spennymoor have four games in hand.
Celtic Nation consolidated third place, a point behind Spennymoor, following an easy 4-1 win at Crook Town, where Colin McMenamin and Michael Rae had them two up in 10 minutes.
Although Craig Hughes cut the deficit, ex-Spennymoor striker Rae struck twice in the space of two minutes to complete a hat-trick.
Ashington are up to fourth after a 3-0 win at Morpeth Town, with Glen Taylor’s double, including a penalty, and a Marc Walton spot-kick doing the damage.
Bishop Auckland twice levelled in a hard-fought 2-2 draw at Newcastle Benfield. Tony Stephenson lobbed Scott Pocklington for Benfield’s opener, but Danny Brunskill equalised with a deflected shot from the edge of the penalty area.
James Luccock’s deflected strike put Benfield back on top, but Brunskill netted again to level.
In Division Two, North Shields are just a point behind leaders Heaton Stannington after routing lowly Esh Winning 5-0, courtesy of Dan Smart (2), Gareth Bainbridge (2) and Dean Holmes.