Willington Quay Saints let a two-goal lead slip as Newcastle Benfield Reserves fired four second half goals to seal a remarkable comeback victory.
Saints took the lead in the first minute as new signing Anthony Bruce, in his second spell at the club, blocked the home keeper’s clearance and the ball rebounded straight into the empty net.
Just before half-time Willington doubled their lead as substitute Glen Johnson, in his first appearance of the season, chested down a Ryan Ferrier pass and smashed a half volley into the corner from 25 yards to send Quay in at the break two goals ahead.
Benfield’s resurgence started five minutes into the second half as Shaun Clennell met a great cross from the left to send a looping header over Henderson and into the net to halve the deficit.
The momentum was with the home side and it was no surprise when they equalised as Michael Baxter pounced on a loose ball and fired an impressive strike into the corner from 18 yards to draw the sides level.
Benfield’s comeback was complete with 20 minutes left when their winger’s stinging shot produced a fine save from Henderson, but Aaron McEwan was quickest to the rebound and tapped home to put his side in front for the first time.
With saints throwing men forward looking for a leveller, Benfield Reserves picked them off on the counter attack and added a fourth when John Wears found himself in space and coolly lobbed Henderson to seemingly seal the three points.
However, Saints were not finished and they quickly pulled a goal back when Noel Clynch’s shot was deflected into the path of Glen Johnson and he slotted home with the outside of his right foot to send the game into a frantic finale.
Johnson nearly had a hat-trick and a point for Quay but Benfield’s keeper saved with his legs to deny him the match ball and guarantee his side a valuable three points in their promotion challenge.
Another frustrating day for Saints as they blew a great chance to get their first win of the season.
They will be hoping to pick up back to back wins in midweek and then on Saturday at home to Wideopen.
Willington Quay Saints: C Henderson, K Austin, Gibson (Clynch 55), D Johnson, Foggett (M Austin 55), Starling, Ferrier, Taylor, Breheny, Bruce (G Johnson 39).