On the last day of the Northern Premier League Premier Division season, Matlock Town handily defeated already-relegated Bradford (Park Avenue) 5-2.

On Saturday, Bradford scored twice in the last twenty minutes, with one coming from former Bantams player James Hanson, who scored his first goal while wearing Avenue colors.

When the ball landed nicely at Ted Lavelle’s feet, Avenue had the opening opportunity of the game.

Despite the fact that he had scored in their previous two games, this time his half-volley attempt went over the bar.

After securing their safety a few weeks prior, Matlock showed they were ready to compete when, after just ten minutes, they took a 2-0 lead.

John Johnston extended the advantage with an incredible strike from a tight angle after Olly Clarke scored his fourth goal of the season from close range.

Four minutes later, Johnston tried his luck once more. This time, his ball reached Nathaniel Crofts, who was coming in at the back post, but his left-footed shot went wide.

Just before the break, Jordan Preston put Jake Daniels, a loanee from Blackpool, in the middle for Bradford to have one more chance, but Daniels’ shot missed the mark.

The second half began with a shot from Johnston straight at Avenue goalie Craig Ellison, who easily stopped the ball from entering his net.

Harry Wood got the ball on the edge of the box a few moments later, but his shot went over the crossbar.

The next thing Liam Hardy did was blast down the inside right channel, missing the net by inches.

After the first sixty minutes of play, Matlock appeared to have a far higher chance of scoring than Avenue, and they eventually paid off when Hardy scored their third goal of the day.

Great work down the left-hand side set up the play, and Clark’s wonderful ball into the box gave Hardy an easy finish.

Johnston scored his second goal of the match a few minutes later and added another.

Johnston scored their first goal, lobbing the ball over Ellison from 40 yards out and into the net, but Ellison sprinted out of his goal to attempt to stop it.

Adrien Thibaut’s close-range goal with 20 minutes remaining gave Avenue their first point.

Following that goal, Bradford gained momentum, and Hanson promptly added a second for the guests after a well-delivered corner.

But Johnston’s hat-trick in the 80th minute sealed the deal, immediately dashing any thoughts of a stunning comeback.

That was after Matlock substitute Curtis Durose went on a fantastic run that was only stopped when he was tackled by an Avenue defender.

The hosts had a late chance to add a sixth goal, but Finlay Armond’s clever little flick could only hit the post.

With 30 points, Avenue finished the season in fourth place, barely ahead of Stafford Rangers on goal differential.

As a result, Avenue will be the first team to receive a relegation reprieve in the extremely rare event that any team is unable to advance due to funding or stadium issues.