SUNDERLAND RCA can at last see a light at the end of what has been a dark long tunnel.
They finally moved out of the Ebac Northern League’s First Division relegation zone when they claimed a crucial point in the midweek fixture at Penrith.
Although now fourth from bottom, the Wearsiders are still in a precarious position.
They are level on points with Billingham Synthonia, who occupy the last relegation position and two behind West Allotment Celtic who are immediately above them.
The Wearsiders, however, have played five games fewer than their two rivals but they need to turn games in hand into points.
Tomorrow, it will certainly be a difficult task at Marske United who are challenging strongly for the championship.
“Marske away is always a difficult one. They are flying high at the moment and if we get anything it will be a bonus,” observed RCA secretary Rob Jones.
Manager Martin Swales is hoping that Colin Larkin, James Armstrong and Anthony Coe will all make the squad.
Crook Town are relegated and they have only pride to play for in the local derby against Bishop Auckland at Heritage Park.
Celtic Nation will almost certainly join them in Division Two next season and it’s unlikely they will add to their meagre points total when they tackle Ashington, who this week signed teenage striker Dillon Armstrong from Hartlepool United.
Manger Steve Harmeson is hoping to bring in two or three more players before kick-off with injuries making James Loughborough, Joe Moscrop and Lance McGlen doubtful. Definitely missing are Jonathon Giles, Michael King, James Taylor and John Priestner.
Billingham Synthonia have a mountain to climb if they are to avoid the drop.
They go to Dunston UTS weakened by the unavailability of captain Steven Huggins, Chris Dodds, Andrew Burton and Dan Dillon.
In contrast sixth top Dunston are likely to name a full squad with Steven Harrison and Gareth Williams coming into the plans of manager Billy Irwin whose only injury concern is for Dale Burrell.
With just three points and two places separating Morpeth Town and Durham City, an interesting game is in prospect at Craik Park.
City manger Ian Chandler will not know until nearer the kick off whether Ryan Noble, who has been on trial with Scunthorpe United this week, will be available.
Although Aiden Haley has returned to training from a broken foot, it might be too early for him to make his come back.
Morpeth still have a chance of finishing in the top six. Manager Nick Gray is hoping that goalkeeper Karl Dryden will come through a fitness check, but if he is unable to play, 18-year-old Shaun McDonald will deputise.
Consett are in good form following the recent appointment of the former Blyth Spartans Assistant manager Colin Myers as boss.
He set a target of nine points from three games and with six in the bag is looking for a hat-trick of victories when Bedlington Terriers visit the Belle Vue Stadium.
Myers, who reckons things are falling into place both on and off the field, welcomes the availability of Scott Martindale and Josh Grey.