South Shields collected their first performance award as an EVO-STIK League club ahead of Tuesday’s Integro League Cup tie against Farsley Celtic at Mariners Park.

The Mariners’ efforts at the start of the season earned them the EVO-STIK North Division Club of the Month award in a combined accolade for August and September.

Julio Arca and Craig Baxter received the prize on behalf of their team-mates before Tuesday’s match, which Shields went on to win 5-3 on penalties after a 2-2 draw.

EVO-STIK League representative Paul Hatt visited Mariners Park to make the presentation, handing over a glass memento and a bottle of spirits.

Shields’ recognition came after they won eight of their opening nine league games to kick-off life as a Northern Premier League club in fine style.

The winners of the EVO-STIK South Division award were Cleethorpes Town, who the Mariners met in last season’s FA Vase final at Wembley.

Shaw Lane had their excellent start to the campaign recognised as they were presented with the top flight award.

IMAGE: Peter Talbot.

The fixtures for the new Northern Premier League season will come out at 9am on Thursday, July 13.

South Shields will compete in Division One North following their promotion from the Northern League last time out.

The first game of the new league season will take place on Saturday, August 12.

Shields will return for pre-season training on Saturday, July 1, with their first friendly to follow two weeks later, at home to Gateshead.

Of the squad which won the quadruple with the Mariners last season, so far only David Foley and Wayne Phillips have left the club, for Spennymoor Town and Morpeth Town respectively. We wish both players all the very best for the future and thank them for a terrific two seasons with the Mariners.

Liam Connell, Craig Baxter, Barrie Smith, Dillon Morse, Jon Shaw, Anthony Callaghan, Robert Briggs and Julio Arca have all committed their future to the club by signing new two-year deals, while Michael Richardson, Darren Lough, Alex Nicholson and Andrew Stephenson are also under contract.

Luke Sullivan and Matty Pattison have joined from Consett and Blyth Spartans respectively, while announcements on the rest of the squad will follow in due course.