Bedlington Terriers suffered defeat at the hands of Sunderland side after gifting their opponents two early goals.
Terriers found themselves up against it after only 11 minutes when keeper Craig Towart failed to collect a left wing cross, pushing the ball into the path of stroker Gavin Barton who had a simple tap in.
It was Barton again on target to make it 2-0 after his half-hit shot slipped out of Towart’s hands to creep inside the post in the 36th minute.
It was a disaster for the home side, who had looked much the better side.
They had been unfortunate not to take the lead in the tenth minute when after a good build-up Walton got in a low cross that found Andrew Leeson, whose his first time drive was cleared off the line by Wayne Henderson.
On 39 minutes Terriers deservedly reduced the arrears when the lively Dylan Williamson broke through to fire low past keeper Carmichael
The home side continued to take the game to their opponents with Williamson and Walton always a threat, but as in previous games they lacked a goalscoring threat with the visitors hanging on to the slender 2-1 lead at half-time.
It should have been all square in the opening minute of the second half when Terriers were awarded a free kick with James Harmison firing in a tremendous drive that Carmichael palmed into the path of Leeson who headed wide of an open goal.
Bedlington continued to push forward without troubling the Sunderland defence, much to the frustration of the home support.
At this stage in the game the visitors were relying on the odd breakaway and it paid off when in the 59th minute Joe Hughes got up well to head past Towart from a left wing cross.
This goal gave the home side a mountain to climb and they fell further behind in the 82nd minute when McAvoy was left unmarked to hammer in number four.
In the last minute teenager Kyle Dobson fired in Terriers’ second goal.
Long time Bedlington manager Kieth Perry, who over the years has achieved outstanding success at the club, has for the first time has a relegation battle on his hands.
He said: “We had a great start to the season but we knew with such a young, inexperienced group it would be difficult to maintain throughout.
“But I cannot fault the lads for effort today, we had the better of possession but lacked the finish in the final third.
“The two early goals were a disaster and after that we failed to take advantage of the chances we created
“We are two points ahead of Team Northumbria with the same games played, so our destiny is in our hands and its up to the players to show what they are made of.”
On Saturday Bedlington entertain Penrith in another crucial clash.