Sunderland West End secured one of their best results of the season to rock Redcar Athletic’s title ambitions.
An impressive 2-1 success away to the Teessiders massively enhanced West End’s bid for a top-three finish.
Anth Nelson and Baz Cook’s side are now just four points behind third-placed Hebburn Town Reserves, with four games in hand.
Redcar, meanwhile, slipped six points adrift of leaders Cleator Moor Celtic, through they have two games in hand.
West End stunned their hosts by taking a 12th-minute lead when a back flick by Adam Drysdale went in past goalkeeper Will Lawrence.
Jordan Cook deservedly made it 2-0 when he reacted first to a fumble by goalkeeper Lawrence, firing home with aplomb.
David Abel rallied Redcar with a goal 10 minutes from time, but West End held on for the three points, despite having David Keithley sent off following a second yellow card.
West End host Leam Rangers tonight, and entertain Richmond Town on Wednesday (both 7pm kick-offs).
Silksworth CW slipped down a place to eight after a 2-1 defeat away to fifth-placed Boldon CA.
Paul Mossa’s Boldon men needed just two minutes to forge in front, with Adam Bell heading past goalkeeper Joe Clayton.
Silksworth, though, showed good character in their response and they equalised after 18 minutes, when Paul Muir fired out of the reach of goalkeeper David Passmore.
It remained 1-1 at half-time. Indeed, the game looked set to end 1-1, following a tight second half, but Boldon won it, with 10 minutes to go, when Neil Cramman headed the winner.
Boldon CA secretary Kevin Oliver said: “This was a good performance by Boldon, against a strong Silksworth side. We have three games to go and need to win these.”
Silksworth, building up to next Monday’s TWR Shipowners Cup final against West End at Silksworth Welfare Park (11am), are away to Richmond Town tonight and entertain Darlington Reserves on Wednesday.
Third-top Hebburn Town Reserves succumbed to a 1-0 defeat at lowly Stokesley SC in their penultimate match of the season.
William Mitchinson scored the only goal in the 70th minute to hand Kevin Bolam’s men their seventh defeat of the season.
Bottom club Coxhoe Athletic found Darlington Reserves too hot to handle in a 3-0 away defeat.
The Quakers made the breakthrough in the 25th minute, with Bailey Prudhoe firing home.
In the second half, James Dawkins doubled Darlington’s lead in the 53rd minute, with Alex Clark adding a killer third goal, five minutes later.
Leam Rangers shared the spoils with Harton and Westoe CW in an entertaining 2-2 draw.
Leam opened the scoring after 21 minutes, with a Nicky Langston header beating goalkeeper Kevin Garrick. Eight minutes later, Gavin Williams increased the advantage with a header.
On the stroke of half-time, Liam Roberts reduced the arrears for Harton, putting the ball past Neil Postlethwaite.
The Hilltop men looked like hanging on for all three points, but, in the final minute, Daniel Sirrell bagged a dramatic Harton equaliser.
Hartlepool were good 4-1 winners away to near-neighbours Wolviston.
Jamie Tumilty opened the scoring for Pool after 12 minutes, putting the ball out of goalkeeper Ryan Hodgson’s reach.
But Philip Otele equalised, three minutes later, giving goalkeeper Josh Noble no chance.
Seven minutes after the break, Pool regained the lead as Tumilty scoring his second goal.
Wolviston were rocked by the 65th-minute dismissal of Otele, for a second bookable offence, and Pool duly moved up a gear.
Andrew Blackburn’s cross was headed home by Sam Cook for 3-1 on 77 minutes, then, with the last move of the game, Ashley Clark centred for Lee Jones to complete the scoring with a header.
Annfield Plain made leaders Cleator Moor Celtic fight all the way to bolster their title hopes, with Kieran Maguire scoring the only goal as the Cumbrians edged a crucial 1-0 win.
Richmond Town hammered Windscale 9-0 at Earls Orchard, though seven goals came in the final 20 minutes.
Adam Walker and Martin Butterworth had them two up deep into the second half, before Kalumn Holbrook scored two penalties in three minutes.
Tom Gilroy’s tidy finish, plus efforts from Ben Darville and Walker, made it 7-0. Gilroy then scored his second goal, with David Gibson’s 25-yard free-kick rounding off a convincing win.