Stockton Town’s season culminates on Saturday when they contest the play-off final with North East rivals Dunston.

Having suffered play-off heartbreak in finals two seasons in a row, Michael Dunwell’s side will hope it’s third time lucky.

Victory in the sold out Northern Premier League East Division play-off final would earn promotion to the Northern Premier League, the same division which Blyth Spartans and Whitby Town will be in next season.

The Anchors advanced to Saturday’s hugely important occasion when they recorded a hard-fought 2-0 victory over Carlton Town on Tuesday.

Darlington and Stockton Times: Glen Butterworth celebrates scoring in Stockton Town's semi-final on Tuesday   Picture: HARRY COOK

Goals either side of the break from Glen Butterworth gave Stockton victory in front of 1,637 spectators.

Stockton missed a good chance in the 11th minute when Mikey Roberts was put in on goal inadvertently by an opposition player, but his effort was well saved by Felix Annan and Butterworth’s scuffed rebound was clawed away by the Ghanaian goalkeeper.

Carlton’s best opportunity of the first half came on the half-hour mark when a quick counter-attack led to an open half-volley, forcing Nathan Harker into a strong save.

As it looked as though the sides were heading into the break level, good combination play from Josh Baggs and Cameron Painter on the left led to the latter putting a fine cross which was bundled over the line by Butterworth to make it 1-0.

The Anchors were fired up after the resumption of the game and had a flurry of chances to open the second half but couldn’t find the back of the net with any of them.

Kevin Hayes had a good chance to give the Anchors a second goal when he was given space on the right, he reached the byline, but his cutback evaded everyone in a yellow shirt.

But it was 2-0 in the 68th minute when Hayes cut inside and drove a low shot towards goal which was parried by Annan to Butterworth, who slotted home nicely to give Stockton a crucial two-goal cushion.

Stockton defended their lead with all their might to secure the victory which means the Anchors head into their third successive play-off final, when there will be another bumper crowd at the MAP Group UK Stadium – tickets sold out inside two hours of going on sale on Wednesday.

Stockton Town: Harker, King, Coulthard, Nicholson, Baggs, Painter (Henry 77’), Portas, Hayes, Butterworth, Roberts (Beddow 71’), Fowler (Sweet 89). Subs not used: McWilliams, D. Mulligan.

Attendance: 1,637