SCARBOROUGH Athletic have been struggling of late in the Evo-Stik League Premier Division but they returned to winning ways with a thrilling 5-3 victory over visitors Hednesford Town.

'Boro roared into a 3-0 half-time lead thanks to goals from Michael Coulson, James Walshaw and Ryan Watson. Watson added a second after the break, while Luke Lofts scored their final goal with 15 minutes left.

The hosts were fortunate that their attack was on form because a second-half defensive malfunction saw them concede three times. The win keeps one-time leaders 'Boro in fifth place.

In the Evo-Stik East, hosts Pickering Town slumped to a disappointing 2-0 defeat against away day specialists Carlton Town.

The visitors have only won once at home in the league all season, but picked up their fifth victory on the road at Pickering. Tyler Blake scored Carlton's early opener before Henry Rollinson finished off the home side with 10 minutes left.

Knaresborough Town suffered a hammer blow in their Toolstation Northern Counties East League Premier Division title bid after losing 3-1 at rivals Penistone Church.

Town's Daniel Thirkell equalised Brett Lovell's early goal, but a second-half double from Nathan Keightley saw Penistone move three points clear of their visitors.

Harrogate Railway Athletic looked doomed heading into December, but after picking up their fourth successive draw at mid-table Eccleshill United, they now only sit two points from safety.

They took the lead when Stephen Smith found the net in the 26th minute, but were pegged back just after the break when Eccleshill's Andrew Cooper scored from the spot. The game finished 1-1.

In Division One, Selby Town kept up their play-off push with a stunning 7-0 win over Shirebrook Town. They lost star goalscorer Joe Dale in the third minute but that did not faze them one bit.

Louis Hutton opened the scoring with a fierce drive before Fraser Hansen waltzed past half the Shirebrook team to score a stunning solo goal.

Gary Collier headed in a free-kick to make it three before the hapless Carter Widdowson put through his own net.

Selby did not sit on their 4-0 half-time lead and added three more after the break. Hansen's second, along with strikes from Liam Flanagan and Chris Bilton, made it a magnificent seven.

Meanwhile, Harrogate Town lost 2-1 at Sutton United in the Vanarama National League to drop below their opponents into seventh place. George Thomson netted their only goal on the hour mark.