Sunderland West End rescued a point with a late leveller in last night’s TWR Bifolds Wearside League draw at Hartlepool.
In a battle of the two weekend cup winners, Pool opened the scoring in the fourth minute, Sam Cook firing the ball past goalkeeper Graeme Pickering, after a good pass by Dale Campion.
But West End equalised in the 88th minute, Luke Taylor scoring after a corner, giving home goalie Elliot Coils no chance.
Both sides were well under strength and both goalkeepers made some excellent saves in an entertaining game.
West End, in their penultimate league game, moved two points above Hebburn Town Reserves, whose season is over.
Their last match is at Wolviston on Saturday, before meeting the Metcalfe Park men again in next Friday’s Monkwearmouth Cup final.
Annfield Plain ran out convincing 4-1 winners at South Shields Reserves, never looking back after Connor Burns beat home goalkeeper Jack Ramage in the eighth minute.
After 34 minutes, an Annfield free-kick was headed into his own goal by Colin Nesbitt for 2-0.
A 20-yard volley from Nicky Gray gave Plain a 3-0 half-time lead, just before the break.
Brian Wood’s cross was headed in by Stephen Burrows to extend the advantage in the 82nd minute, before Barry Sutton bagged a consolation goal for Shields, giving keeper Ryan Mason no chance.
Bottom club Coxhoe Athletic lost 3-0 at Leam Rangers.
Joe Hunter volleyed the 34th-minute opener from just outside the box, beating goalkeeper Dan Scott.
Three minutes after half-time, Nicky Langston doubled Leam’s lead, before the goal of the game came on 84 minutes, with Sam Manning driving the ball into the top corner of the net from 35 yards.
Redcar Athletic moved a point clear in top spot thanks to a 1-1 draw at Richmond Town.
Richmond took the lead with a penalty from Kalumn Holbrook in the 40th minute. Andy Jennings missed a 53rd-minute spot-kick for Redcar, but they did snatch a crucial equaliser in the 62nd minute, Jordan Rivis scoring past goalkeeper Mark Walker, following a Joe Bennett corner.
The Seasiders will be crowned champions if they beat Leam Rangers on Saturday. Rivals Cleator Moor Celtic, a point behind with a massively superior goal difference, entertain Coxhoe in their final game.
Wolviston saw off Stokesley SC 4-1 after falling behind to Ryan Rivis’s fourth-minute strike.
Junior Masandi levelled from close range just before the break, and he went on to complete a superb hat-trick, with Philip Otele adding to their tally with a strong, angled drive.