Sunderland Echo - - Sport -

Wear­side’s wait for an FA Vase-win­ning side will go into an­other sea­son af­ter Sun­der­land RCA suf­fered a heart-break­ing de­feat against North­ern League ri­vals West Auck­land Town.

The two sides needed ex­tra-time to be sep­a­rated and they looked set to head to a re­play at West’s Wanted Sta­dium in mid­week.

But, in the very last sec­onds of the ad­di­tional 30 min­utes, for­mer Vase win­ner Lewis Dodds sent the two-time fi­nal­ists into the fifth round.

RCA cap­tain Greg Swansbury summed up the mood at the club af­ter the de­feat, but chal­lenged his play­ers to make amends for their gutwrench­ing Vase exit.

“We are so dis­ap­pointed that it was in the last minute,” said the cen­tre-back.

“Both teams played well, and it was al­ways go­ing to take a sloppy goal like that.

“It was a tight game, but we have to put it be­hind us now and move on.

“We still have plenty to play for this sea­son and we are de­ter­mined to make amends.

“We can’t re­ally dwell on it and we have to make up for the loss as soon as pos­si­ble.”

Heb­burn Town will join West Auck­land in to­day’s draw for the last 16 of the com­pe­ti­tion.

The Hor­nets were a goal down to strike from Shep­shed Dy­namo striker Joe Pheas­ant as the tie headed to­wards half-time.

But a Michael Richard­son vol­ley and an in­stinc­tive fin­ish from Luke Sul­li­van even­tu­ally saw off their Mid­land League op­po­nents.

How­ever, New­cas­tle Ben­field’s hopes of a Wem­b­ley ap­pear­ance were ended by North West Coun­ties League club North­wich Vic­to­ria.

The Vics took ad­van­tage of some poor de­fend­ing to take a three-goal lead into half­time thanks to strikes from Joel Brown­hill, Har­vey Whyte and Matthew Clarke.

Sec­ond-half goals from Mark Turn­bull and Den­nis Knight brought Ben­field back into the tie, but they couldn’t find an equaliser to force the game into ex­tra-time.

In North­ern League Divi­sion One, Gary Pear­son jumped off his sickbed to wit­ness Ry­hope CW come out on top in a seven-goal thriller at Shildon.

James El­lis and Michael Rae both scored twice as Pear­son’s side took an im­pres­sive three points against a Shildon side that ended the game with nine men af­ter Marc El­li­son and Daniel Moore were both shown red cards.

Ry­hope had taken the lead four times in the game, but were pegged back by strikes from Ai­dan Hey­wood, Billy Greulich-Smith and Rail­way­men player-man­ager Moore.

Pear­son ad­mit­ted that he nearly missed the game with an ill­ness, but was de­lighted to see his side claim a hard­earned win.

“I wasn’t very well, and I nearly didn’t come to the game.

“All of the ex­cite­ment, I think it’s made me worse.

“Tak­ing the lead four times in a game, you’d ex­pect to take some­thing away.

“It’s done and dusted and we have the three points against a very good side.

“I think we wanted it more and we had more ideas, they were back to front with run­ners.

“We had our backs to the wall but we cre­ated and built up the play a long way bet­ter, es­pe­cially in the first-half.”

Two sides in Divi­sion One’s top three pro­duced a high­qual­ity af­fair at Belle View but lead­ers Con­sett and third­placed Bishop Auck­land couldn’t break the dead­lock, de­spite cre­at­ing a num­ber of good chances through­out a pul­sat­ing 90 min­utes.

Sec­ond-placed Dun­ston UTS lost for the sec­ond con­sec­u­tive game as a Olly Mar­tin brace helped Whit­ley Bay to a 3-2 home win over Chris Swailes’ side.

The re­sult also handed for­mer Sun­der­land Ladies man­ager Mick Mul­h­ern his first league win since tak­ing over at the Hill­heads helm.

North Shields con­tin­ued their fine form as sub­sti­tute Gary Day got the only goal of the game in their win at Ash­ing­ton.

Stock­ton Town con­tin­ued their push for a top-five place as two fine free-kicks from Max Craggs and sin­gle strikes from Chris Stock­ton, Max Craggs and Sonni Cole­man eased the An­chors to a 5-1 win at New­ton Ay­cliffe.

Guis­bor­ough Town came through their “must-win” home game against Pen­rith with ease.

Mark Robin­son and Danny Earl both scored twice in a 5-0 win for the Pri­o­ry­men.

Mean­while, Durham City as­sis­tant man­ager Steve Dur­rant be­lieves that in­juries took their toll dur­ing his side’s 4-0 de­feat at Northaller­ton Town in the North­ern League Divi­sion Two.

Richie Walker and Da­mon Reeks both scored twice in each half to give the North York­shire out­fit a com­fort­able win over the strug­gling Cit­i­zens.

Dur­rant paid trib­ute to young debu­tant Adam Thirl­away and in­sisted that City will im­prove once they are back at full-strength.

He said “We had a quar­ter of our squad miss­ing with in­juries, so it makes it dif­fi­cult when you can’t put out your strong­est team.

“That said, keep­ing things sim­ple and mak­ing bet­ter de­ci­sions will change our for­tunes.

“There was a great de­but for Adam Thirl­away, who did him­self proud com­ing in from the re­serves and looked ev­ery part the first-team player.

“We hope to have num­bers back against Red­car Ath­letic next week­end and we are hop­ing to bring in one or two more sign­ings due to the amount of in­juries we have that are long-term.”

lead­ers Billing­ham Town stretched their un­beaten run to 24 league games, although they were given a big scare by strug­gling Bran­don United.

The two sides went into half-time on level-terms af­ter a Jay Ni­chol­son own goal was can­celled out by a strike from Bran­don de­fender Ben Joyeaux.

Town striker Craig Hutchin­son put his side back in front just be­fore the hour­mark, but they were left up against as goals from Niall Fin­gle­ton, Lee Blades and Joyeaux’s sec­ond of the day gave the vis­i­tors a two-goal lead as the game headed into the last five min­utes.

Matthew Robin­son gave Town some hope of mount­ing a come­back with a goal four min­utes from time and an in­jury-time penalty from Hutchin­son en­sured that they pre­served their un­beaten run in dra­matic fash­ion.

A Kur­tis Howes brace and goals from Paul Rod­dam and Ian Ward helped Thorn­aby con­tinue their push for pro­mo­tion with a 4-2 home win against out-of-form Wash­ing­ton.

Rob­bie Mid­dle­brook and Kieran Brook­field found the tar­get for the man­ager­less Mechanics.

Kieran Me­gran and Joe Hailes were amongst the goals as Ch­ester-le-Street Town main­tained their top­four po­si­tion with a 2-1 win at Esh Win­ning.

Billing­hamSyn­tho­ni­a­won for the first time in five games as they came from be­hind to claim the points at Crook Town.

For­mer Stock­ton Town player Chris Dun­well gave

Ac­tion from Sun­der­land RCA’s game against West Auck­land Town in the FA Vase.

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