Northern Alliance Premier Division leaders Wallington recovered from the early loss of influential midfielder Ben Turnbull to an ankle injury, twice coming from behind in atrocious weather conditions before winning 5-3 on penalties to secure their place in next month's Northumberland FA Benevolent Bowl Final against either Burradon & New Fordley or AFC Newbiggin.

Meeting for the second Saturday in a row on the 3G pitch at Ponteland Leisure Centre, the visitors had plenty of possession in the opening stages without being able to seriously test home keeper John Jenner before a defensive mix-up gifted Ponteland United the lead in the eighth minute. Jenner's massive clearance kick was allowed to bounce outside the box before sailing over the heads of both defenders and advancing keeper Aaron Carr to leave striker Mason Stephenson with the simple task of slotting the ball into an unguarded net (1-0).

That setback stung the visitors into action with top-scorer Jordan Nellis twice sending it low on his favoured left foot across the face of goal without any of his teammates getting a touch, shortly before Kris Willis dragged a 20 yard shot wide.

At the other end, Thomas Southern's long range strike took a slight deflection on its way through to Carr, and centre forward Dan Hadfield rose highest in the box to flick on a throw from the left to Stephenson who saw his effort deflected for a corner.

Hadfield then had a header punched clear by Carr and, after being kept alive, the return ball was fired straight at the keeper.

Weather conditions deteriorated rapidly mid-way through the half just as Wallington were enjoying the lion's share of territory and possession but Trevor Baston's side were still unable to break down a resolute and well organised home defence.

The ball broke kindly for an unmarked Jack Cooper on the edge of the box but he blasted a shot high over the bar under no pressure, James Walker's headed clearance was returned into the six-yard box and nodded wide by Nellis who, moments later, then missed the visitors' best chance of the half.

Following good play down the right, winger Sheldon White's pinpoint cross picked out Nellis unmarked in the six-yard box but his header flew wide of Jenner's right-hand post when he should really have scored.

Soon after the re-start, Ben Middleton beat the offside trap as he chased Dan Roberts' through ball into the box but Jenner was off his line quickly and got there just in time.

The visitors almost conceded a second on 51 minutes when Sam Armstrong's 30 yard free-kick curled into the box from the left somehow went through a crowd of bodies without getting a touch and drifted inches wide of the far post.

Wallington then went straight down the other end and were awarded a penalty after Nellis was floored in the box by a sliding challenge. The prolific striker, who has scored more than 200 goals for the club, stepped up to send Jenner the wrong way from the spot (1-1).

However, the visitors were only back on level terms for a couple of minutes as Ponteland took full advantage of some poor marking at a set-piece to regain the lead. From a corner on the left, Armstrong's accurate delivery was met by Niall Codling's firm header which flew into the net off the underside of the bar (2-1).

Before play resumed, Wallington changed their attacking options with Keelan Nellis and Brad Richardson replacing Sheldon White and Micky Angus.

Another chance went begging from a corner when Curtis Williamson got on the end of Cooper's delivery to the back post but headed over.

Their second equaliser came on 64 minutes when Cooper chipped the ball over a static defensive line to an unmarked Jordan Nellis who coolly slotted it past Jenner from close range (2-2).

The visitors were largely on top from that point without being consistently dangerous. Cutting inside from the right, Jordan Nellis had a low left-footed strike deflected behind for the first of two corners in quick succession and, from the second one, a glancing header flew narrowly wide of the far post.

Apart from a Southern shot and Hadfield header that were safely gathered by Carr, it was one-way traffic towards the Ponteland goal in the last 15 minutes. Middleton's cross from the right bounced off the top of the bar and stayed in play with the cut-back to Cooper fired just wide of Jenner's left-hand post, Justin Millican's back post header from a corner was cleared off the line, Keelan Nellis and Richardson had shots deflected behind and, on the stroke of 90 minutes, Richardson blasted another effort over the bar.

It remained 2-2 after five minutes of stoppage time and the tie went straight to penalties with Wallington winning the toss to go first. 

Jordan Nellis converted the opener before Chris Hibbitt's effort was brilliantly saved low down to his right by Carr. Jack Cooper, Keelan Nellis and Lewis Robson's successful spot-kicks were matched by strikes from Sam Armstrong, James Walker and Mason Stephenson to make it 4-3 before Wallington legend John Paxton stepped up to fire home the winning penalty.

There was a mixed bag of results for our other local sides on Saturday with defeats for Haltwhistle Jubilee, Hexham FC and Ryton & Crawcrook Albion, while in-form Prudhoe YC Seniors Reserves won 7-2 at Heddon United. Their goals were scored by Kieran Baptist (3), Steven Knox (2) and David Burns (2).