Northern League: Chester on the up as Megran, White clinch three precious points

Ryhope CW skipper Kyle Davis (red and white) battles against City of Liverpool in Saturday's FA Vase tie. Picture by Kevin Brady
Ryhope CW skipper Kyle Davis (red and white) battles against City of Liverpool in Saturday's FA Vase tie. Picture by Kevin Brady

Chester-le-Street are up to fourth-bottom spot in the Second Division, following a hard-earned 2-1 win at fellow strugglers Darlington RA.

After a cautious and nervy start, the Cestrians took the lead through Kieran Megran’s 43rd minute effort.

In the second half, Jim Wilson missed a crucial penalty for RA, which was brilliantly saved by Jack Wilson and Chester duly went 2-0 up on 66 minutes, with Alex White scoring.

Although RA pulled a goal back, Glenn Donaldson converting an 83rd-minute penalty, the visitors held on for three huge points and a fourth league win.

Chairman Joe Burlinson said: “We played really well in the first half and could have won more easily.

“They came back strongly in the second half and it was a hectic last period of the game, but we are very pleased with the three points.

“The young lads are still learning, but they battled well and I was proud of them.”

Manager Colin Wake added: “It was mixed emotions and a disjointed performance, as we were excellent early in the game and should have been three goals up.

“But we then went back to old habits in the second half and it could have cost us dearly, but, overall, I am pleased with the result and with their commitment and desire, particularly Kevin Dixon, who was outstanding.”

Durham City lost a thriller, 5-3 at home to Esh Winning.

Callum Boakes fired Esh ahead in the sixth minute, only for Bradley Hird to equalise three minutes later.

Daniel Knowd made it 2-1 to City, but two Shaun Reay strikes had Esh back in front, until Hird’s second of the game made it 3-3.

Connor Halpin completed a dramatic first half with Esh’s fourth goal and they clinched the win with a 75th-minute effort from Daniel Mann.

Easington Colliery succumbed 2-0 away to Ryton & Crawcrook Albion, whose goals both came in the second half, with Sam Moore and Martyn Hepple on target.

Brandon United slipped into the bottom three after a 5-0 thrashing from Willington, who bagged the crucial opener right on half-time and never looked back.

Matty Moffatt, Michael Brown, Jason White, an own goal from Steven Turnbull and Connor Lowes did the damage.

Crook Town had an excellent 1-0 home win over high-flying Hebburn Town to boost their position neat the foot of the table.

The winner came in the 25th minute, when Kyle Morris scored to give new manager Chris Lax three welcome points.

Northallerton Town went top thanks to a comfortable 2-0 away win at Whickham, with second-half goals from Stephen Cheeseman and Shaun Hudson winning the day.

Alnwick Town stayed bottom after a 2-0 loss to fellow strugglers West Allotment Celtic, with Zayd Muhammed and Bruno Mendes-Correia both netting in the second half.

Blyth are up to fifth, following a narrow 1-0 victory over Jarrow, with David Robinson firing home in the 53rd minute.