Northern League: Nine unbeaten as Easington Colliery battle out a draw against Willington

Sunderland RCA's Nathan O'Neill (red/white) comes under pressure from an Ashington defender. Picture by Kevin Brady.
Sunderland RCA's Nathan O'Neill (red/white) comes under pressure from an Ashington defender. Picture by Kevin Brady.

Easington Colliery extended their unbeaten run to nine matches with a hard-fought 1-1 draw at home to Willington in Division Two.

Easington were close to scoring midway through the first half, when Shaun Smith headed Ryan Barrow’s excellent cross against the post.

Craig Hannant made good saves for Willington, but he was beaten on the stroke of half-time, when Smith finished well following good approach play.

Willington equalised in the 56th minute, when Lewis Milner headed a free-kick into the corner of the net.

Liam Adamson fired over the bar as Easington pushed for a winner, but Hannant ensured a point for Willington with a fine save to deny sub Michael Builder late on.

Second-bottom Chester-le-Street were well beaten 6-0 at high-flying Heaton Stannington.

Heaton went top with th success and can thank goal scorers Shane Jones, Abu Salim (2), Dan Robinson, Iulian Petrache and Ryan Bailey for the hefty win.

Injury hit Durham City, returned to form with a 2-1 home victory over Thornaby.

But they did it the hard way, after falling behind in the very first minute, when Daniel Chapman put the Teessiders ahead.

City hit back quickly, with Ben Joyeux netting on seven minutes, then Chris Pattison fired the winner for Ollie Hotchkiss’s men on the hour mark.

Tow Law Town moved into second position, thanks to a thrilling 3-3 draw at Blyth.

Four goals came in eight first-half minutes. Tow Law went 2-0 up with a brace from Lewis Teasdale in the 27th and 30th minutes. However, Blyth fought back to level, with Steven Little scoring on 33 minutes and David Robinson netting two minutes later.

In the second half, Bobby Taylor put the home side ahead on 70 minutes, but Dean Thexton’s 80th-minute effort ensured a share of the spoils.

Brandon United went down 3-0 at home to bottom club Alnwick Town.

Two goals from Stephen Young, sandwiched by a Chris Laidlaw strike, were more than enough to claim Town’s third win of the season. Boss Richie Mitchell has since left Alnwick.

Crook Town are out of the bottom three after beating Esh Winning 2-1, but they left it late to win the three points.

Esh led through Matty Allison’s close-range effort, following a goalmouth scramble, but Crook quickly levelled, when Kyle Morris slid in to beat goalkeeper Mark Fish.

The winner came in the 89th minute, when Matthew Stephenson headed home.

Kai Elliott’s goal earned Jarrow an impressive 1-0 win at Whickham, who missed a penalty, while Northallerton slipped to fourth after losing 3-1 at Bedlington Terriers, who had Lewis Coyle (2) and Josh Miller on target.

West Allotment climbed out of the bottom three after beating fellow strugglers Ryton & Crawcrook Albion 3-2, leap-frogging them at the same time.