Sunderland climbed one place to third in the Barclays U21 Premier League table despite being held to a 1-1 draw by Stoke City at Eppleton CW.
Craig Lynch put Sunderland ahead inside the first minute, but James Alabi cancelled out that early striker on eight minutes.
The Black Cats made the perfect start, taking the lead with just 40 seconds on the clock.
George Honeyman’s throughball released Lynch and he lifted his finish over the goalkeeper from just inside the penalty area.
But Stoke levelled after some slack defending inside the box allowed Alabi to score with a deflected shot.
Also in the first half, Honeyman brought a good save out of Stoke keeper Daniel Bachmann, while at the other end Jordan Pickford parried Alabi’s powerful drive from a tight angle.
And in the second half, Pickford made an excellent stop from a Karim Rossi header on 67 minutes, and Bachmann saved a snap shot from substitute David Moberg Karlsson at the foot of his left-hand post.
SUNDERLAND U21: Pickford, Cartwright (Mitchell 70), Harrison, Egan, Ferguson, Watmore, Ba, Gorrin (Oliver 62), Mavrias (Karlsson 70), Honeyman, Lynch. Subs (not used): Dixon, McNamee
STOKE U21: Bachmann, Wheeler, Sanders, Grant, O’Reilly, Thomas, Lecygne (Monlouis 76), Dawson, Ward, Rossi, Alabi. Subs (not used): Westley, Eve, Taylor, Richards Booked: Lecygne, Thomas
Referee: P Brown Attendance: 437