DARLO LET IT SLIP
By Nic Evans. Last Updated: January 1, 1970 1:00am
IN the top of the table clash at Feethams, Darlington went 2-0 up against Rotherham only to see the leaders to fight back, with a Steve Tutill own goal making the score 2-2.
Marco Gabbiadini continued his amazing goalscoring form this season with the opener after just five minutes. Glenn Naylor made it 2-0, three minutes before half-time but a towering Guy Branston header pulled a goal back for Rotherham, ten minutes into the second-half.
Four minutes later, Tutill`s attempted clearance flew into the top corner and secured a point for the visitors.
The result left Darlington still four points behind Rotherham with a game in hand but, as the North-Easterners are seven points clear of Northampton, it seems that automatic promotion is almost secure for Darlo.
Second placed Swansea drew 1-1 away at Brighton, with Julian Alsop giving the home side the lead before Gary Hart gave the Welsh side a share of the spoils.
At the bottom of the table, Chester moved level on points with slumping Shrewsbury after a hard-fought 1-0 away win at Halifax. Luke Beckett got the only goal of the game from the penalty spot after 14 minutes.
Shrewsbury were beaten 2-1 at home to Lincoln City. Lee Thorpe gave the away side the lead after 13 minutes only for Andrew Tretton to equalise nine minutes into the second half.
Gavin Gordon`s goal after 68 minutes proved the winner and left The Shrews facing the distinct possibility of Conference football next season.
Another team facing relegation is Carlisle, who slumped to a massive 4-0 home loss to Hull. Richard Prokas put the ball through his own net after 32 minutes and Jason Harris made it 2-0 just into first-half injury time.
Harris got his second with 13 minutes left and Steve Morgan completed the scoring three minutes later.
Cheltenham and Torquay continued their battle for a play-off place and it was The Robins that came out on top with a 2-0 win at home. Russell Milton opened the scoring after 33 minutes and Martin Devaney wrapped the game up with eight minutes left.
Cheltenham moved up to seventh, in a play-off place, whilst Torquay slipped six points behind them.
Hartlepool also kept up their play-off hopes when they came from behind to defeat Exeter. Noel Blake scored his first goal since 1997 for the away side but two goals in a minute from Paul Arnison and Ian Clark gave Hartlepool the 2-1 win.
Barnet stayed sixth with a 1-0 win at mid-table Mansfield. Marlon King got the only goal six minutes into the second half.
Peterborough and Rochdale shared a six goal thriller, with Andy Clarke giving Posh the lead after 17 minutes, only for the man with the most amount of outfield appearances, Tony Ford, to equalise two minutes into the second-half.
Tony Ellis put the away side 2-1 up, but Simon Rea`s first goal for Peterborough made it 2-2. Jason Peake gave Rochdale a 3-2 lead but the home side fought back again and Jason Lee tied the score at 3-3 with eight minutes left.
Plymouth beat Northampton 2-1 at home, although they had to come from behind after Carlo Corazzin gave the away side the lead after 11 minutes. Mark McGregor equalised for Argyle 12 minutes later and Jason Rowbotham gave the Pilgrims the win with 19 minutes left to keep Plymouth on course for a play-off spot.
In the two other games of the day, both Leyton Orient and Macclesfield and Southend and York battled to scoreless draws.