Two goals from Tony Brown helped inspire Alnwick Town to a priceless 4-1 win over Chester-le-Street, as his side closed the gap at the bottom of the table.
Brown opened the scoring with a close-range header before hammering in a 30-yard freekick after 87 minutes.
Daniel Thompson and Stephen Wood also found the net on Saturday as the St James’ Park side sealed their third league win of the season.
Town remain bottom of Northern League Division Two, but the victory took them to within four points of relegation rivals Horden CW and six points from safety.
Before the match, Town held a minute’s silence in memory of former committee member Bobby Dodds, who passed away earlier this month.
The black ‘n’ white’s fine performance was a fitting tribute to the sports-mad 75-year-old.
With just four minutes on the clock, Town took the lead when Brown headed in from a Kieran Hogg cross.
Brown nearly grabbed a second with a delicate chip, but his audacious effort went just over.
Chester-le-Street’s first effort was from long range. Connor Graham’s rising shot was pushed over by Brian Brooks.
Town went two-up on 35 minutes. The lively Hogg was once again the provider, this time teeing up Thompson at the far post.
The visitors went close to reducing the deficit soon after. Graham’s header was saved by Brooks before George Convery cleared off the line.
Town went further ahead five minutes before half-time. A combined move from Hogg and Alex Makin found Wood who broke clear and curled the ball past the keeper to give Town a 3-0 lead at the interval.
Chester-le-Street went more attacking in the second half and the tactical switch nearly paid off a minute after the break, but for Brooks pushing the ball onto the bar and Makin clearing off the line.
The visitors did get their goal on 55 minutes when Lewis Lynch scored from 10 yards.
Town may have feared history repeating itself – having thrown away a 3-0 lead earlier in the season to lose 4-3.
But there was no such repeat this time round.
Town’s resolve may have been put to the test though if Kieron McDonald’s shot had found the net, instead of finding the inform Brooks, who pushed the ball over the bar.
But from then on, Town dominated. Thompson and Ben Keenan both went close to scoring the homeside’s fourth.
That honour was left to Brown, whose fine free-kick rounded off a vital win.
Alnwick: Brooks, Makin, Convery, Murray, McPherson, Hills, Moffat, Brown, Thompson (Keenan), Wood (Baston), Hogg (Colley). Sub: Kennedy.
○ Alnwick Town’s Northern League Division Two clash at Jarrow Roofing was postponed on Tuesday night because of a waterlogged pitch.
The rearranged date for the fixture is to be confirmed.
The St James’ Park side are due to be back in action on Saturday, when they travel to Whitehaven. The league fixture kicks-off at 3pm.
Town’s next home game is on Saturday, December 8, when they welcome Washington to St James’ Park for a Northern League Division Two match, which also kicks off at 3pm.
○ Club officials have said that the Alnwick Town clubhouse is available for any parties, free of charge.
To book, call Tom McKie on 01665 605555.