Sunderland old boy Dowson steers Darlington into Evo-Stik play-off final

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DARLINGTON 1883 last night edged out Spennymoor Town to reach the Evo-Stik League’s Division One North play-off final, with ex-Sunderland striker David Dowson was the last-gasp hero,

Boss Martin Gray, the former Sunderland midfielder, raced half the length of the field to celebrate a stunning semi-final win, with Darlo striking twice in the final 12 minutes to come from behind to win 3-2, delighting to majority of a sell-out 1,987 crowd at Heritage Park in Bishop Auckland.

The Quakers will now host Bamber Bridge on Saturday, with the winners earning promotion to the Premier Division.

Darlo made the breakthrough in a breathless clash right on half-time when Gary Brown produced a superb cross for Graeme Armstrong to head home.

Jason Ainsley’s Moors – who finished fifth in the league, behind runners-up Darlington – equalised when Joe Tait notched from close range after Peter Jameson denied Liam Henderson.

The visitors stormed ahead on 76 minutes when sub Michael Roberts looped an effort over Jameson after a neat turn inside the box.

Sub Liam Hatch levelled with his first touch two minutes later, nodding in Terry Galbraith’s corner.

Kallum Griffiths was close to a third goal for Moors but his brilliant volley came back off the bar, and Darlo won it a minute from time when Ar,mstrong did well down the left and crossed for Dowson to finish off at the near post.