Northern League: Ruthless Ryhope hit nine to condemn Washington to relegation

Sunderland RCA's Stephen Callen (red/white) rises to get in a header against Newcastle Benfield on Saturday. Picture by Kevin Brady
Sunderland RCA's Stephen Callen (red/white) rises to get in a header against Newcastle Benfield on Saturday. Picture by Kevin Brady
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Washington’s relegation from Division One was confirmed on Saturday, following a 9-1 derby loss to ruthless Ryhope CW.

Nat Skidmore fired Ryhope in front after five minutes at the Nissan Sports Complex and James Ellis added the first of his hat-trick, in the 27th minute.

Jak Hanson pulled one back soon after for the Mechanics, who had a couple of half-chances to threaten an equaliser in a bright spell.

But Ellis completed his treble with two more goals before half-time and Skidmore hit his second of the game, to make it 5-1 at the break.

Josh Home-Jackson, Joe Melvin, Corey Nicholson and Michael Rae all got in on the act in the second half to complete a convincing victory, though Washington kept fighting and, with a bit of luck, could have scored a couple of consolations.

Ryhope manager Gary Pearson enjoyed a fifth successive league win which has brought 24 goals and lifted the Wearsiders to 14th place, 14 points above the drop zone.

Pearson said: “Obviously the result speaks for itself, but I’m really, really pleased with the performance and I couldn’t have asked for any more to be honest.

“Nothing against Washington, but we really dominated them. We are in good form at the moment it’s been a while coming, but we’re finally scoring goals again.

“We went through a bit of a bad spell, but we seem to be getting it together now and the results are showing that.

“I’m really happy over the last few games. We’ve rotated the squad, the goals are being evenly spread out and the lads are working together and results like this show how good a team we can be.”

Nathan O’Neill was the hero for Sunderland RCA as they came from behind to beat in-form Newcastle Benfield 3-1 at Meadow Park.

RCA showed great character to come from behind, as Jake Orrell headed past goalkeeper Keith Finch for Benfield’s opener in just the fourth minute.

RCA turned up the heat in the second half and levelled on 50 minutes, when O’Neill dived to head home Reece Noble’s inswinging cross.

The former Ryhope CW frontman put RCA in front on went ahead when he pounced on a defensive mix-up, after great work from Michael Charlton, to give RCA the lead, via the post, in the 69th minute.

Two minutes later, the game was safe when O’Neill completed his hat-trick with a clever backheel.

That moved RCA up to sixth place, level on points with fourth-top West Auckland and Shildon.

RCA could go third if they beat third-bottom Jarrow Roofing at Meadow Park tomorrow,

Seaham Red Star lost 4-0 at Ashington, who now sit eighth.

Lee Scott put the Colliers ahead on 34 minutes, when he finished well from close range, and Damien Stevens produced a neat chip over goalkeeper Jordan Harkess to quickly double the lead.

In the second half, Scott smashed home a third and Dale Pearson wrapped things up with 15 minutes left, with a nice individual goal.

Consett remained third, despite a 2-0 loss at Shildon, who left it late to claim all three points.

Adam Burnicle fired them Railwaymen ahead in the 89th minute, when he raced clear and beat goalkeeper Kyle Hayes.

Sub Kyle Patton then tapped home the second, following good work from Burnicle.

Consett can now focus fully on tomorrow’s Durham Challenge Cup final against Dunston UTS at Eppleton CW (7.15pm).

Bishop Auckland boosted their survival chances by beating North Shields 2-0, rising six points above Jarrow Roofing, whose home clash with West Auckland was called off.

Chris Winn’s deflected shot went over goalkeeper Sean McCafferty’s head and into the net for the 36th-minute opener.

Winn smashed home the killer second goal 15 minutes from time.

Bottom club Billingham Synthonia were all but relegated after losing 4-1 at home to Newton Aycliffe.

Their 26th defeat leaves Synners 27 points from safety with nine games to go, and with a far inferior goal difference.

Thibault Charmey shone with all four goals for Aycliffe in the 15th, 30th (penalty), 41st and 53rd minutes. Ben Jackson had earlier levelled at 1-1

Penrith claimed a vital point in their relegation fight, but they were pegged back twice as Dunston UTS forced a 2-2 draw.

Martyn Coleman fired the Cumbrians into an early lead, but Liam Thear’s deflected shot levelled matters. Jonny Murray soon restored Penrith’s advantage, but Mark Fitzpatrick equalised with a 66th-minute spot-kick.

Marske United continued their relentless title push with a 4-1 win at Whitley Bay.

However, Bay struck first when Callum Johnston fired past goalkeeper Robert Dean.

Andrew Stephenson’s impressive strike levelled it up, then second-half goals from Peter Bulmer, Michael Roberts and Curtis Round comfortably saw Marske home, despite Roberts also missing from the penalty spot.

The Seasiders are now just 12 points behind leaders Morpeth Town, with eight games in hand. Morpeth’s home date with Guisborough was postponed.

Team Northumbria are up to 11th place, following an excellent 2-1 home win over FA Vase finalists Stockton Town.

Max Craggs put the Anchors ahead from the penalty spot after 10 minutes, but Nick Green equalised and Ben Dibb-Fuller converted a 56th-minute penalty winner.