South Shields rounded off pre-season with a comfortable 3-0 victory over Dunston on Saturday.
A Joao Gomes brace and another from Darius Osei sealed the win for the Mariners, with the home side creating a wealth of chances throughout.
They now have a week to prepare for their Pitching In Northern Premier League opener against Stalybridge Celtic after recording their fifth straight victory.
Shields had the first sight of goal as Mackenzie Heaney tried his luck from a free-kick, but it was straight at the goalkeeper. Dunston broke away with pace and forced Myles Boney to make an excellent save to keep the scores level.
The Mariners found the breakthrough as Osei received the ball from Will McGowan, set himself and curled a magnificent effort into the far corner.
Blair Adams came inches away from scoring a wonder goal. He showed quick feet to beat a defender and fired a shot which wasn’t too far away from finding the top corner.
Martin Smith did brilliantly to win the ball in midfield and release Osei, but he dragged just wide. Only moments later, Osei had another great chance, but thundered his effort off the post.
Shields were awarded a penalty shortly after the restart after Dylan Mottley-Henry was brought down. Mottley-Henry stepped up, but blazed the spot-kick over the bar.
Heaney, who was a thorn in Dunston’s side all afternoon, was released down the right soon after, but his ambitious lob landed just the wrong side of the post.
Moments later, McGowan was played through on goal, but he couldn’t get enough bend on the ball and his strike was wide.
Shields had chances galore in the second period, and Mottley-Henry was the next to get one. Michael Woods played a great pass through and the forward took a great touch, but couldn’t get his attempt on target.
After applying pressure for large parts of the game, it finally paid off for the Mariners. Sam Hodgson lifted the ball over the goalkeeper and Gomes followed the ball in, making sure that it crossed the line.
Only moments before time, Gomes added another. Robert Briggs fired the ball across the six yard box, and Gomes was waiting at the back post to tap into an empty net.
Shields face off against Stalybridge at 1st Cloud Arena next Saturday, as the Pitching In Northern Premier League begins.
Shields: Boney, Hunter, Adams (c) (Doherty 73), Broadbent (Bodenham 73), Liddle, Smith (Briggs 73), Woods (Trialist 73), McGowan, Heaney (Jenkins 73), Mottley-Henry (Gomes 73), Osei (Hodgson 73).
Goals: Darius Osei (17), Joao Gomes (76, 87).
Image: Kevin Wilson.