WOODFORD United dented Northwood’s prospects of reaching the play-off places through a single-goal success at Chestnut Avenue.
This was on a day when half a dozen players were red-carded in Central Division matches.
Northwood’s Reece Yorke was dismissed for picking up a second yellow card in the 50th minute but the damage had been done by then as the Reds sealed an unexpected victory through an early strike from Glen Hawkins.
Elsewhere Rugby Town had two players sent-off in the 3-3 draw with relegation-threatened Fleet Town, Uxbridge were similarily afflicted at St Neots and Burnham finished with only 10 men at home to Beaconsfield SYCOB.
Woodford’s win halted a run of six defeats and resulted from a brisk start which saw Hawkins get the ball in the net after five minutes only to be ruled offside.
Soon after the striker pivoted on the edge of the box to lash the ball into the top corner of the net.
This time the goal stood but triggered off an attacking frenzy from Northwood who failed to breakdown a defence well organised by man-of-the-match Ben Milner. Milner has consistently caught the eye since returning to Byfield Road for a third spell.
Fully nine points ahead of Fleet with a game in hand Woodford should have no further relegation worries and can instead turn their attentions towards trying to beat rivals Daventry Town on Easter Monday.
Rugby needed a late header from Ed Booth to salvage a point against Fleet at Butlin Road but manager Dave Stringer will not be happy that both Ross Miller and Michael Williams got themselves sent-off in the closing stages.
Uxbridge suffered the same fate towards the end of a goal-less draw with league leaders St Neots when Danny Julienne’s two yellow cards and Max Howell’s straight red saw the visitors finish with only 10 men.
The other sending-off came at Burnham where the home team’s Dan Willment received his marching orders in the 55th minute of a tightly-contested games which Beaconsfield won by 2-1. This followed first-half goals from Tyrone Sealey and Anthony Page.
Biggleswade Town got back onto a level keel when Harry Hunt scored the only goal at Aylesbury while third-placed Bedworth United came unstuck by a similar margin at Chertsey. Ashord drew 0-0 with Marlow.
Sean Bishop made the first goal and scored the second as Leighton Town beat visitors Bedfont Town by a 2-1 margin. But title-contenders Slough Town were held to a 1-1 draw by Chalfont St. Peter at Beaconsfield.