RYHOPE CW enjoyed a seven-goal romp at Darlington Cleveland Bridge to keep the pressure on Redcar Athletic in a two-horse race for the Wearside League championship.
Before Saturday Bridge had conceded only 42 goals, but were overwhelmed by Martin Swales’ team.
Man-of-the-match John Harrison rifled four goals, with Nathan O’Neil, Chris Trewick and John Butler also on target.
Ryhope are now the leading scorers with 84 goals and although eight points behind Redcar Athletic, have four games in hand on their rivals.
Redcar show no signs of weakening and comfortably saw off the challenge from Hartlepool with strikes from Stuart Poulter, Jamie Lee and James Kesterton.
Stockton Town stay third but it will be a major shock if they finish top. They maintained their slim hopes with victory at Gateshead Leam Rangers, who went behind through Adam Nicholson and David Johnson before Leon Kane scored a late consolation goal.
Until last week, Sunderland West End had won 11 games on the bounce, but have now suffered consecutive defeats.
Coxhoe Athletic produced one of the shock results of the season, winning at the Ford Quarry complex with an only goal by Billy Snaith.
The Durham side remain bottom and despite claiming nine points from their last four games, Silksworth Rangers are still second from the basement.
Their latest success was at home to Peterlee Town when James Gilhespy pounced with the all-important goal, after Anton Crann’s strike had rebounded from the woodwork.
Colin Snailham was an early marksman for Annfield Plain before Mark Foster claimed a point for fifth-top Willington.
H Boldon CA reached the final of the Monkwearmouth Charity Cup following a nine-goal thriller with Wolviston, which they won 6-3.
Three goals in a hectic 14-minute spell swept Boldon into an unassailable position.
Shaun Reay rifled a hat-trick, with Chris Robinson, David Hopper and Shaun Heads also finding the net. Ryan Hebb, Shaun Gregory and Robert McIlroy replied for Wolvistion.
For the second successive week, Ashbrooke Belford House’s second round game at Cleator Moor Celtic was postponed because of a waterlogged pitch.
A third attempt to settle the tie will be made in April.