League leaders North Shields march on as they make it nine consecutive league wins
North Shields produced a stunning attacking performance to beat Chester-le-Street on Saturday and stretch their run of consecutive league wins to nine.
Lee Mole initially gave the Cestrians the lead after five minutes, but the Robins quickly responded to ensure they came from behind to win for the seventh time this season, and a second time in a week.
Top scorer Lee Mason levelled the scores before Jack Donnison put the Robins in front at the break.
Mason then added his second from the penalty spot minutes into the second half, and although reduced the arrears to one through substitute Logan Powell, Further goals from Dan Wilson and Marc Lancaster sealed a comfortable win.
The victory sees Shields open up an 11-point gap on second place South Shields, although the Mariners have three games in hand.
In a dominant first half, the Robins fell behind, as they had when the sides last met as Kyle Hayes’ save rebounded off Mole and into the net.
But the home side were not behind for long. Wilson slid a ball in behind the defence for Mason, who was on hand to hold off his defender and place the ball past Jack Wilson.
Four minutes later, the Robins took the lead through an unlikely source – Donnison. The right-back produced a striker’s finish to fire his shot into the bottom left-hand corner, finishing off a great move.
Jon McDonald’s side were eager to gain a third, and probably should have, but a mixture of good defending from the Cestrians and the Robins’ attack rushing their chances temporarily prevented that.
Shields bombarded the Chester goal, the best opportunities saw a Dean Holmes close-range shot cleared off the line while Wilson and Gary Ormston saw efforts directed behind for corners.
After the break, missed chances in the first period were seemingly forgotten when Donnison again advanced forward into the box and won a penalty after being tripped. Mason stepped up to give his side a two-goal advantage.
Powell, who replaced the injured danger man Dominic Laws at the break, turned to hammer the ball into the roof of the Robins’ net in the 61st minute to once again make a one-goal game. But if there were any nerves around the Daren Persson Stadium, striker Wilson quickly dispelled them. He showed his strength to hold off his marker and slot the ball home for 4-2.
And on a day of attacking desire showed by everyone in the Robins side, Lancaster followed his fellow full back in getting himself on the score-sheet. The left-back had time and space in the box to calmly add a fifth.
Gareth Bainbridge, who came off the bench, was close to adding a sixth, but keeper Wilson saved well to deny the Robins’ favourite in the last opportunity.
Highlights from Saturday’s game are online at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vopWkWSAIiA