Macclesfield Town came from a goal down to beat Barrow AFC 3-1 at the Moss Rose to maintain their two-point advantage at the top of the Vanarama National League on Saturday.
Luke James put the visitors ahead after 11 minutes, but the Silkmen showed just why they lead the table by coming back and dominating the majority of the remainder of the game.
They replied 10 minutes before the break through Mitch Hancox, before a Danny Whitaker penalty after 70 minutes and a goal from February`s player of the month Elliott Durrell 7 minutes later, sealed the Silkmen`s win.
Sutton United remain in second spot, but were really made to scrap for the points at The Borough Sports Ground against fourth-bottom Solihull Moors, who can count themselves rather unfortunate not to have got a point from the game.
The referee was extremely busy throughout, showing nine yellow cards and one red.
What turned out to be the only goal of the game came after 37 minutes when Tom Bolarinwa turned the ball in from a corner.
The U`s came close to doubling their advantage just before the break, but an Aswad Thomas header at the far post was cleared off the line by defender Tyrone Williams.
The second half saw Moors really push for an equaliser, but they were pegged back after 76 minutes when Adi Yussuf was dismissed for a second yellow card for deliberate handball.
Nine minutes from time though, the ten-men almost equalised when Sutton `keeper Jamie Butler pulled off a flying save to keep out a curling effort from Kyle Storer.
And then in the 3rd minutes of stoppage time, an Alex Reid effort was cleared off the line by Jamie Collins.
But Sutton held on for three crucial points.
Tranmere Rovers are looking menacing in third, albeit five points behind Sutton.
They won 4-0 at Victoria Road against inconsistent Dagenham & Redbridge.
The sides went in at the break level, but it wasn’t long after the restart until Rovers took the lead.
Connor Jennings got to the byline before pulling the ball back to Andy Cook who netted his 15th goal of the season in the 47th minute.
Rovers continued to press forward, and James Norwood drew a brilliant save from Mark Cousins after a great run forward from his own half.
James Norwood made it 2-0 after 68 minutes when he burst into the penalty area, waited for the keeper to make the first move, and calmly dinked it over him.
Rovers kept press and there was a third goal a minute later when Cook picked up the ball on the left edge of the area, cut inside onto his left foot and he curled the ball into the far corner.
There was time for a fourth goal in stoppage time as Norwood scored his second of the game when he flicked the ball past Cousins to seal a comfortable victory.
The most amazing result of the day came at Mill Farm where AFC Fylde ran riot with seven goals against a now fourth-placed Aldershot Town.
A stunning first half display from the Coasters blew The Shots away – and probably their title hopes with it.
After Danny Rowe`s early 2nd minute opener, The Shots were briefly level, thanks to Josh McQuoid’s deft 5th minute finish, but a Rowe went on to complete his hat-trick in the 18th and 19th minutes, with Sam Finley from 25 yards in the 10th minute and a Simon Grand header in first half injury-time making it 5-1 after a stunning first half display from the hosts.
Finley made it 6-1 just past the hour-mark but blotted his copy book by over-celebrating and being shown a second yellow card.
But a delightful lob from Jack Muldoon made it 7-1 just 3 minutes later and, despite being down to ten-men, Dave Challinor`s side comfortably saw out the remainder of the game.
And in this sort of form will be a force to be reckoned with going into the final furlong of the campaign, being just two points off a top seven spot now.
Fifth-placed Boreham Wood were held to a goalless draw at the Victoria Ground by struggling Hartlepool United.
Pools withstood some strong pressure from the visitors, particularly once Scott Harrison was sent-off just after the hour-mark, to pick up a point.
Wood were on top for much of the first half, putting the pressure on Pools without doing too much to test Scott Loach.
It was more even in the second until Harrison`s dismissal for a second bookable offence.
With Wrexham playing Chester FC tomorrow, Ebbsfleet United had the opportunity to put pressure on the Dragons when they travelled to the Matchroom Stadium to play Leyton Orient.
But the Fleet were held to a 1-1 draw and are four points adrift of Wrexham, who hold the final play-off spot.
Fleet travelled to E10 on the back of four straight league victories and led through Corey Whitely’s 15th minute strike.
But the O’s were level by half-time, courtesy of a 32nd minute Kenny Clark own goal after great work from James Brophy.
The home side forced the issue in the second half without being able to find a winner.
It was disappointing fare for 69 minutes of the game between Bromley and bottom-markers Guiseley AFC at the H2T Group Stadium.
But the final 20-plus minutes brought plenty of drama.
In the 70th minute, battling Guiseley were reduced to ten-men when Victor Nirennold was sent-off for a second bookable offence, bringing George Porter down as he looked clear through on goal.
Just 2 minutes later, Bromley took full advantage when Porter crossed for sub Josh Rees, who was left with a simple finish past Luke Coddington in the Guiseley goal.
But 3 minutes from the end of normal time, it looked as though the Lions were heading back north with a point when John Rooney grabbed an equaliser.
But late drama as Omar Bugiel, who came off the bench as the clock ticked into stoppage time, popped up to finish brilliantly past Coddington into the bottom corner and win it for the Ravens.
Gateshead ended a terrific week when they reached the semi-finals of the Buildbase FA Trophy by hammering Maidenhead United 7-1 at the International Stadium on Saturday.
Richard Peniket opened the floodgates after 22 minutes to give the hosts the lead which Jake Hyde cancelled out 2 minutes later.
But Jamal Fyfield`s first goal of the season restored Gateshead`s lead just 2 minutes on.
Danny Johnson went on to complete a second half hat-trick – his first for the club – with Paddy McLaughlin and sub Jordan Burrow also getting in on the act.
FC Halifax Town moved eight points clear of the drop zone and to within a point of their hosts Woking after winning 3-1 at Kingfield.
The visitors took the lead after 33 minutes from the penalty spot after Matty Kosylo was brought down by Kane Ferdinand and Kosylo dusted himself down before sending Nathan Baxter the wrong way from the spot.
The Cards equalised 5 minutes into the second half when Charlie Carter diverted an effort from new returnee Regan Charles-Cook past Sam Johnson.
However, the lively Kosylo restored the Shaymen`s lead on 66 minutes from a narrow angle and then sub Connor Thomson wrapped up three points for the visitors with a third 10 minutes from time.
November 11th was the last time that Maidstone United had won a league game.
That was at Plainmoor against second-bottom Torquay United.
And the Stones have since gone seventeen league matches without a win – until meeting Torquay again, this time at the Gallagher Stadium.
It was a 1-0 win in November, and defender Josh Hare popped up with 2 minutes left to score the only goal of this one, Ross Lafayette’s header from a Joe Anderson cross coming back off the post for Hare to net the rebound.
It was a vital win for Jay Saunders` side, who were dropping dangerously close to the drop zone, but now possess an eight-point cushion.