WITTON Albion have moved into the play-offs places after a superb 3-0 home win against fellow promotion chasers Stalybridge Celtic.

An own goal from Connor O’Grady gave Witton a 21st-minute lead and then the victory was ensured with strikes from James Lawrie (55mins) and Connor Hughes (87).

Hughes had replaced Lawrie after he was studded in the shin in a challenge which resulted in Stalybridge substitute Craig Robson being sent off in the 72nd minute.

Any striker would have been proud of O'Grady's diving headed goal, which sadly for him was in his own net, but credit goes to Mike Koral's wonderful first-time delivery from the right flank that tempted him in the first place.

Cameron Fogerty's drive from halfway led to the all-important second goal.

Elliot Rokka held the ball up, softly laid it off to the right for Joe Duckworth to square across from the incoming Lawrie to squeeze his shot home between keeper and the defender on the line.

Duckworth was at the heart of the third goal as well, dummying to shoot from the edge of the box before laying it off for Hughes to smash low and hard into the opposite bottom corner.

Jon Macken’s men jump two places to fourth spot in Northern Premier League West as a result, though all the teams around them have between one and three games in hand.

In the same division, 1874 Northwich earned their first point in eight games thanks to a 1-1 draw at fellow strugglers Mossley.

The Greens, who are still without a win in 10 games under Damian Crossley, got their share of the spoils with an 83rd-minute goal from Oliver McFadyen - his first for the club.

1874 went into the contest on the back of two players leaving in midweek, Jack Marrow, who has signed for Kidsgrove Athletic, and Lucas Weir, who has joined Leek Town, while Crossley, who apologised to fans for an 'utterly indefensible and unacceptable' second half in the previous week's 5-0 loss at Widnes, handed a debut to Ezikiah Bowen, brought in from Salford City.

Mossley went ahead in the 24th minute through Ben Darby.

That advantage came close to being doubled a few minutes later when Matthew Wonnacott produced a double save after Chris McCann was caught in possession.

There were few clear-cut chances until 1874's Kacper Mialkowski beat two men before his shot hit the post in the 77th minute.

Wonnacott produced another great save to deny Mossley's Jack Banister a likely winner two minutes before 1874 restored parity through McFadyen blasting home his shot from outside of the box.

Mark Jones was at the heart of some great defensive work in the last five minutes to keep hold of the point that '74 deserved.

Meanwhile, Northwich Victoria were hammered 6-0 away to second-placed Lichfield City in the Midland League Premier Division.

And Winsford United bowed out of the Edward Case Cup at the quarter-finals stage after losing a penalty shoot-out 3-2 at Euxton Villa.

Blues looked to be heading into the semi-finals thanks to Reece Davies’ 12th-minute score but the hosts forced the contest into penalties with a reply from Matthew Westwell in the 87th minute.

The equalising goal had been coming all game, with Villa creating a glut of chances.

The crossbar saved Blues in the 57th minute.