Salesbury gave their promotion hopes a big boost on Saturday as they beat Padiham, who missed the opportunity to draw level with Section B leaders Barnoldswick.
Kurt Robinson’s side failed to capitalise on the table toppers’ slip up against Baxenden at Back Lane, though they clawed back another four points in the race for the title.
As a result just 13 points separate first and third in the Ribblesdale Cricket League’s lower tier, with Padiham now eight points short of the summit, and Salesbury a further five adrift.
While Barnoldswick were beaten by seven wickets, their nearest rivals were defeated by 32 runs at the Arbories.
Michael Letson secured career best figures with the ball with 5-48 from an 11.4 over spell, while home professional Brady Barends took his tally to 35 wickets for the term when claiming three scalps at the expense of 48 runs.
Nathan Whitehead added two wickets to the equation, shipping 57 runs in an 11-over spell, but the trio’s performances wasn’t enough to restrict their opponents.
Visiting paid man Neil Hornbuckle struck nine boundaries in making 41 from 60 balls as he formulated a 56-run stand for the first wicket alongside opener Chris Riley.
Jason Rawson (22) and Joe Rawlinson (24) constructed a 38-run partnership for the fourth wicket to keep the visitors moving forward, while Sam Bristol and Stephen Brown did the same at the tail end.
The former contributed 29 runs to the away side’s 192-run total while Brown added an unbeaten knock of 21.
In their chase, the hosts couldn’t accumulate the speed needed at the beginning of the innings to genuinely threaten Salesbury.
The home side only had 27 runs on the board when their first three batsmen had been sent packing, but South African paid man Barends reduced the deficit with a knock of 36 midway down the order.
Letson added 15 runs to the equation when coming in at number seven while Rhys Meehan hit seven boundaries in a knock of 43 at the tail end.
However, it wasn’t enough as Salesbury eased home.
Salesbury travel to face Feniscowles and Pleasington on Saturday.