MICHAEL Waggett banged in a double as leaders Heaton Stannington zeroed in on the Northern alliance premier division title.
He slotted the opener against Killingworth Sporting just before the break and three goals in six minutes after half-time – from Ben Telford, Jonathon Wright and a stunning Waggett drive – shattered the resistance.
Joe Wear headed a fifth late on to complete the emphatic win.
But Hebburn Reyrolle’s important victory at Whitley Bay A keeps them in contention. It what was a must-win game for both sides, Channon North went clear to tuck away the first and Dean Patton volleyed in the second after the break.
The cheers that Ponteland United heard last summer in lifting the title turned to tears as they crashed to defeat at already-relegated Murton and joined them in the relegation spots.
Shaun Gibson’s early free kick gave Ashington Colliers the points at Carlisle City, who hit the woodwork three times, while Shankhouse also rattled the post in a goalless draw at Blyth Town.
Stocksfield struck four times in the second half at Walker Central with Chris Fairless (2), Glenn Caygill and Philip Murray on target and Harraby CC also hit four in the second half against Gateshead Rutherford on Friday night.
Goals from Forest Hall’s Jorge Bollado and Josh Gow lifted them up to ninth in division one as they beat Newcastle Uni, who replied through Tom Smith.
Daniel Sneap crashed in a hat-trick for Cullercoats and Steve Hart grabbed the other as they led nine-man Wallsend Town 4-1. But never-say-die Town fought back to level with goals from Paul McHutcheon (2), Lee Garwood and Louis Ekon.
Hexham kept up their second division title hopes with two goals in five second half minutes from Thomas North and Liam Heenan in a good open game with plenty of chances against Swalwell.
Northbank are also in with a shout and moved up to third with a narrow victory over Seaton Burn, Aaron Roberts grabbing a double and Nicky Routledge and Martin Rickerby the others with Chris Baker bagging a brace and Jordan Milne the other in reply.
Bedlington Terriers Reserves are looking to book a promotion spot after a 3-2 win at Willlington Quay Saints. Rob Eastway, Michael Grieves and Ryan Chisholm were the Terriers hitmen while Noel Clynch and Kane Chirnside hit the net for Saints.
Alston’s Jordan Norris hit two in a comfortable win over Cramlington United. Dan Alexander got the third.