South Shields took advantage of a lightning quick start as they made it 10 wins in a row by thumping Esh Winning 4-0 on Saturday.
Lewis Teasdale opened the scoring within a minute for the Mariners, and added the third after Ben Riding had made it 2-0.
Julio Arca wrapped things up with a trademark free-kick towards the end as Shields moved five points clear at the top of Ebac Northern League Division Two with a ninth clean sheet in 10 games.
Shields made the perfect start to the game as they took the lead within 60 seconds. Riding’s ball forward was headed back to Arca 35 yards out, and he played it through for Andrew Bulford. First time, the striker sent it over the top for Teasdale to run onto, and he made no mistake as he swept it past the goalkeeper with the outside of his right foot.
The visitors were dominant in front of an away following thought to be over 150, and almost went 2-0 ahead when home goalkeeper Mark Connell fumbled a low cross from Adam Sakr before grasping the ball at the second opportunity.
Shields did not have to wait too long for their second, though, and it came in slightly fortuitous circumstances.
Adam Curry threw the ball in for Riding 30 yards out on the left, and his cross flew over the head of the goalkeeper before nestling in the opposite corner.
The Mariners looked like running riot, and Daryll Hall headed over from a corner before the third goal arrived in the 19th minute.
Arca collected the ball after a corner was sent back to him, and he did incredibly well to roll it past his man and cut inside before smashing an effort against the crossbar. The ball bounced back to Teasdale, who slammed in the rebound for his fourth goal for the club.
Shields looked like scoring with every attack, and Riding was denied by an impressive save from Connell after being picked out by Hall’s cross.
A later counter-attack saw Teasdale cross for Arca, and the Argentinean pulled it back to Scroggins, who smashed a shot which was excellently palmed over by Connell.
Hall had a goal ruled out for a foul and Bulford saw a penalty appeal waved away, while the hosts had their first shot two minutes before half-time, but Adam Smith curled the free-kick harmlessly over.
At the break, David Foley replaced Sakr, and it did not take long for Shields to reassert their dominance.
Wayne Phillips led a lightning quick counter and then found Foley, whose cross from the right was headed over by Teasdale.
Teasdale continued to be thwarted in his quest for a hat-trick, and his next opportunity came when Bulford picked him out with a superb cross, but he could only divert it wide.
Foley was looking sharp on the right flank, and some terrific play from the former Hartlepool United man saw him dribble his way through before finding Teasdale, who hit it wide.
Arca, Hall and Foley were denied by Connell, and Teasdale just failed to control a cross from Phillips before the Mariners did find goal number four.
It came 11 minutes from the end with a brilliant swish of Arca’s left boot.
He lined up a central free-kick 25 yards out and curled a trademark effort in off the post as he notched his third goal for the Mariners.
Shields enjoyed much of the late possession as their domination of the game continued, but they kept the clean sheet they had been seeking and moved into a strong position ahead of Tuesday’s trip to second-placed Chester-le-Street Town.
SOUTH SHIELDS: Pocklington, Smith, Curry, Hall, Riding, Arca, Sakr (Foley 46), Scroggins (c) (Wightman 77), Bulford (Byrne 70), Teasdale, Phillips. Subs not used: Young, Turner.
Goals: Teasdale (1, 19), Riding (13), Arca (79).
WORDS: Daniel Prince. IMAGE: Mick Sharp.
South Shields made it nine wins in a row as they defeated Billingham Synthonia 3-0 to move to the top of the league.
Goals from Warren Byrne, Michael Turner and Lewis Teasdale sealed the three points at Mariners Park.
Above are video highlights from the game.
VIDEO: Daniel Prince. STILL IMAGE: Peter Talbot.
South Shields continued their terrific run of form as they moved to the top of the league with a 3-0 win over Billingham Synthonia on Tuesday.
Shields were watched by another tremendous crowd of 703 at Mariners Park, and goals from Warren Byrne, Michael Turner and Lewis Teasdale sealed a ninth win in a row.
It was an impressively comfortable victory for the Mariners against a Synners side who had won their last six league games without conceding a goal.
Shields were in control from the start as they continued the feel-good factor from Saturday’s 4-0 win over Ryton and Crawcrook Albion, which was watched by a crowd of over 1,000.
Byrne – who was restored to the starting line-up for the game – scooped an effort wide after just 55 seconds after being picked out by Wayne Phillips.
Barrie Smith and Phillips were both denied by visiting goalkeeper Jack McLaren, while Adam Sakr struck a shot into the side netting as Shields continued to dominate.
Ben Riding’s bullet header from a Phillips corner was cleared off the line, and at the other end, Synthonia’s first chance came when Jamie Clarke turned on the edge of the box before firing well over.
His free-kick from the left later stung the palms of Scott Pocklington, but that was to be as close as the visitors got to breaching the Shields defence.
Byrne and Riding were the next to be denied for the Mariners, who finally took the lead five minutes before half-time.
Turner played the ball into Byrne just outside the box in the centre, and he controlled it before dribbling past three men and firing a superb shot into the opposite corner.
Sakr almost created a second soon after when his cross came close to being converted, but Shields went in at the break with a 1-0 advantage.
The Mariners gained control in the second half, too, and a quick break led to a blocked shot by Andrew Bulford and an effort from Smith which was deflected wide.
The hosts’ lead was doubled on 63 minutes when Phillips’ free-kick was met by a superb volley from Turner, and his effort took a slight deflection before nestling in the bottom corner.
David Foley was brought on and almost scored immediately from a free-kick, with his effort deflected over, and from the resulting corner, Byrne was denied.
The third goal for the home side came nine minutes before the end when Sakr made a strong run down the right and his cross was met by substitute Teasdale, whose first shot was parried before he converted the rebound.
Adam Curry – who had a superb performance at right-back – later slipped in Teasdale, who rolled the ball just past the post, but Shields had done more than enough already to move top of the league.
They travel to Esh Winning on Saturday as they look to make it 10 in a row.
SOUTH SHIELDS: Pocklington, Smith, Curry, Hall (c), Riding, Turner, Sakr, Wightman (Arca 72), Bulford (Foley 64), Byrne (Teasdale 74), Phillips. Subs not used: Young, Ramsey.
Goals: Byrne (40), Turner (63), Teasdale (81)
WORDS: Daniel Prince. IMAGE: Peter Talbot.