CHESTER-le-Street and Morpeth Town were last night relegated from the Skilltrainingltd Northern League First Division.
The Cestrians needed to win at Penrith to have any chance of surviving but managed only a point when leading scorer Nathan Fisher cancelled out Matthew Lea's goal.
Morpeth's lingering hopes ended with a 6-1 defeat at champions Spennymoor Town, Craig Hubbard with a hat-trick in the first 34 minutes.
Anthony Peacock and Chris Mason took the home side's total to five and although Chris Armstrong replied, his goal was no more than a consolation and Hubbard scored again late on.
Shildon were confirmed as runners-up to Spennymoor Town with Whitley Bay's defeat at home to Ryton, who only recently retained their top-flight status.
Dale Bartlett, James Allsopp and Stephen Aiston struck for the visitors with Mark Waite the Seahorses' only scorer.
Bedlington Terriers enhanced their chances of ending in the top six with victory over Norton and Stockton Ancients. Anthony Shandran (2) and David Southern had the Tynesiders comfortably in front before Michael Dunwell replied.
Promoted Jarrow Roofing have lost their last three games, last night losing to Whickham, for whom Chris Allen and Scott Palmer netted. Roofing's only goal was credited to Daniel Kirkup.
An only goal by Gavin Barton three minutes from time earned Crook Town the points against Washington and Thornaby defeated Whitehaven 2-1 in a dress rehearsal for next week's Ernest Armstrong Memorial Cup Final.
Scarborough Town are favourites to clinch the Wearside League championship during their first season in the competition.
Although they managed only a point at New Marske, Ryhope CW's defeat by Easington Colliery means the Seasiders require only four points from their last three games to start celebrating.
Josh Greening gave Boro a perfect start with his third-minute strike but on 15 minutes Richie Playforth drove in the equaliser from the edge of the penalty area.
Sam Garvie converted a 28th-minute penalty for New Marske and Nathan Cook restored parity from the spot on 62 minutes.
Ryhope CW lost for only the third time when Easington Colliery won by an only goal scored by Kevin Devine in the 20th minute.
The Wearsiders, now just a point ahead of Scarborough Town, pressed strongly in the second period but were denied when Easington goalkeeper James Winter twice saved brilliantly from Mark Davison.
l THE three pace-setters in the Pin Point Recruitment Northern Alliance’s
Premier Division all won, leaders Wark 2-0 at home to neighbours Stocksfield, both Phil Thompson goals.
Walker Central stayed in second spot and three points behind Wark after beating Carlisle City 3-1 at Monkchester. Stephen Forster, John Campbell and Liam Mulligan netted in the first half for the Central before City’s reply from Jamie Heath.
Having played four games less than Walker, Heaton Stannington kept the heat on and leapfrogged over Blyth Town into third spot with a 2-0 victory at Ponteland United with goals in the last 20 minutes by Brian Dodsworth and Lawrence McKenna.
Blyth Town slipped up, going down 2-0 against visitors Ashington Colliers who had Mark Richardson and Joe Moscrop on target before the break.
Relegation is a stronger possibility for Newcastle University and Heddon. The Students lost 4-1 away to Killingworth, Heddon lost 3-2 at home to Harraby Catholic Club.
Alnwick Town and visitors Seaton Delaval drew 2-2, Mark Cockburn and Scott McMullen for Alnwick, Nick Gray and Stephen Howes replying.