Northern League: Easington out to finish on a high with third successive victory

Easington Colliery joint manager Craig Hughes is targeting a third win in a row to end the Second Division season on a high tomorrow.

Hughes, whose men take on Durham City at Willington, said: “We’ve won our last two and it would be great to finish the season with three consecutive wins.”

Club captain Chris Pearson will return to the squad having missed the last game at Alnwick and Ethan Wood also returns. Aidan Goodey is expected to miss out with a toe injury, while Shaun Smith will be missing again.

Durham manager Ollie Hotchkiss said: “Steve Molloy is unavailable for the rest of the reason, but, other than that, I think we are back to full strength.

“It will be a difficult game, as they all are, and I think they will make us work hard for the three points. But if we have a positive performance, then we will have a positive result, and hopefully the game will go our way.”

Chester-le-Street welcome Heaton Stannington to Chester Moor Park.

The Cestrians have a long list of injuries to contend with. Dan Hepplewhite, Scott Robson, Sam Moore and David Surrey, all miss out and there are doubts over Craig Marron, Andrew Clarkson, Callum Greaves and Lee Mole. Kevin Dixon is out with his cricket commitments.

Manager Colin Wake said: “We are stretched to the limits of our small squad for the game. With Heaton in a good vein of form and just on the outskirts of the promotion battle, I am sure they will be giving it everything to try and stay in touch, in case the sides above slip up.

“We were well and truly beaten at Heaton earlier in the season, so we are looking to claw back some credibility with an improved performance and hopefully a positive result.”

Heaton striker Jonathan Wright scored his 100th competitive goal in 99 games, in Monday’s 3-1 win at Brandon, so he will have to be watched carefully.

Jarrow head to Thornaby for their last game of the season.

Manager Dave Bell said: “On Wednesday night, we moved to 50 points and we are delighted with this points total.

“We will be looking to add to it, but Thornaby are an excellent side, who have had a great season, and we will need to perform really well to get anything out of the game.”

Jarrow have Aaron Kah and George Simpson returning, but Darren Morton is a doubt having picked up an injury in midweek.

Bell added: “We know a lot of teams are in the same position, with a number of games in a short period of time, but these lads have been absolutely brilliant and have given everything on the pitch.”

Four teams are still vying for promotion to Division One, in an exciting end to the promotion race.

Leaders Blyth go to Tow Law Town, while second-top Whickham must wait until Monday to host Heaton Stannington. Third-placed Hebburn Town travel to relegated Darlington RA and fourth-top Northallerton Town entertain Willington.

At the bottom, Brandon United are at home to Bedlington Terriers, while Crook Town head to Esh Winning.