The top two in the North Riding League Premier Division were really made to battle, on Saturday, with leaders Stockton West End needing a last-gasp strike to see off St Marys 1947. The Saints went ahead 25 minutes from time through Paul Vaughan. Alex Jamieson levelled before a dramatic finale saw Michael McLaughlin win the match for West End right at the death.
Boro Rangers clinched a five-goal home thriller with Bedale. Jamie Lee opened the scoring, For Rangers, on 15 minutes, only for Ross Hodgson to level, just after the half hour. Two goals in seven minutes, midway through the second half, from Dan Lockwood and man of the match Stu Rose made the difference for Ben Wheatley’s men. Matt Goodwin’s 90th minute goal proved a mere consolation for Dale.
At the other end of the table, the bottom two battled as BEADS beat New Marske 5-1, to open up a four-point cushion. Liam Robson struck for New Marske, but it wasn’t enough.
Redcar Newmarket also enjoyed a comfortable victory. The league’s top goalscorer Michael Dowse smashed in another hat-trick, with Jamie Graham also on target for Newmarket. Visitors Kader netted through Carl Williams.
Guisborough Town Reserves were also victorious in a one-sided encounter with Stokesley Sports Club. The Priorymen struck through Ross Gardner, John Howard, Jonathon Scotland-Peacock and Dominic Harrison in a 4-0 win.
There were three much closer ties in the North Riding County Cup. The pick of them saw Yarm & Eaglescliffe just about see off Fishburn Park. Ian Danby and Jack Dalton put Yarm into an early 2-0 lead, only for the Whitby side to level before half-time, through Sam Richardson and Callum Halley. The hosts re-took the lead when Anthony Chisman fired home, only for Dan Brown to pull Park level once again, at 3-3. Marshall Thorogood won it for Yarm late on, though there was still time for Fishburn to find the crossbar deep into stoppage time.
Thornaby Dubliners saw off Richmond Town, of the Wearside League, 2-1. Former Whitby Town midfielder Charlie Raby broke the deadlock for Dubs on 16 minutes. They doubled their advantage, within ten minutes of the second half’s arrival, through Anton Buchan. Buchan could have added his second and Thornaby’s third from the penalty spot, but missed and when Richmond netted late on, it was a nervous last five minutes plus, but Dubs held on.
Redcar Town also progressed as fellow NRFL Premier opponents Grangetown Boys Club were put to the sword. Visitors Town won it thanks to two Stu Poulter goals in eleven minutes, early in the second half.
Stokesley Sports Club Reserves remain on top in the First Division after seeing off rivals Thirsk Falcons 4-2. Falcons led through Josh Peirse, however, going into the interval. Steve Todd may have dished out some strong words at half-time as his side looked a different team after the restart. Within 12 minutes, Matty Lazenby levelled, five minutes later, Isaac Walker put them ahead and inside the next seven, James Brodie-Myers made it 3-1. Danny Calvert added a fourth, thirteen minutes from time, with Falcons notching an injury-time Tom McDowell consolation.
Great Ayton United Royals are second after a bizarre game that yielded 12 goals. Visitors Loftus FC certainly played their part, despite finding themselves 3-0 down at half-time. Karl Wellard nodded home Ash Woodier’s cross, with Woodier himself making it 2-0 and Jake Thompson adding a third before the break. Woodier and Wellard seemed to have made the points safe at 5-0, but Loftus smashed in four quickfire goals for 5-4. Woodier and Wellard completed their hat-tricks, Thompson grabbed his second too, as Royals hit eight late on, 8-4 the final scoreline.
Tees Valley Tigers missed out on a great opportunity to make ground on the leaders. They were held 2-2 by a young Whitby Fishermends side, who led through James Armstrong, with Isam Benomran levelling two minutes later. A header from Brogan Russel put Fishermens ahead again, with Benomran again equalising straight away. The second half saw three penalties missed, with the Whitby missing side missing out before their keeper Paul Cull blocked and an injury-time spot-kick was smashed against the bar by the Tigers.
Redcar Athletic Reserves are also on the fringes and hit Middlesbrough Rovers 7-3. However, they had to do it the hard way as the bottom side flew into a shock three-goal lead, inside 25 minutes. Dan O’Brien fired two, with Jamie Flannigan hitting a third. Redcar roared back though and goals from Joel Callender, Jamie Ascough, Tom Eglinton, Joseph Mannion, Owen Clarkson, and McCorie Carmichael’s brace saw them to a 7-3 win.
Lingdale Village defeated Stokesley Athletic 2-1. Rob Bennett and Lewis Reeve struck for Lingdale, with Jack Severs pulling one back for the visitors.
In the Under 19 ranks, on Sunday, Redcar Athletic went back up to second after hitting Coulby Newham 4-0. Tom Eglington hit two, with McCorie Carmichael and Joe Bennett completing the scoring.
Elsewhere, Nunthorpe edged a closely-fought thriller with champions Guisborough Town. This despite Priorymen goals from Isaac Walker and Jake Ward.