The Abermain Hawks have climbed to third on the C-grade table with a 30-18 win against Paterson River on Saturday.
However, the Kearsley Crushers dropped their second game in a row after promotion to B-grade.
The Crushers were the latest victim of the Kotara Bears juggernaut going down 42-0 to a team which started in D-grade but looks increasingly like it should be in A-grade.
Kearsley has been given no favours since moving to B-grade, going down 32-16 to West Wallsend the week before the Magpies went up to A-grade and facing the Bears in the second game.
The Crushers will hope to get their season back on track when they meet fellow promoted team Dungog at Bennett Park on Sunday.
The Hawks are hitting their straps after a disrupted pre-season and notched up their third win of the season to go with their opening round draw against Clarence Town to sit behind promoted team East Maitland Griffins and Waratah Mayfield.
Abermain coach Dean Peterkin said the Hawks backs took full advantage of a strong platform by the forwards.
Five-eighth Tim Fitzpatrick and wing Jacob Lambert both scored doubles, with halfback Cody Dodd also crossing.
Front-rower Michael Hug flew the flag for the forwards with a four-pointer. Fitzpatrick was able to convert three goals.
Peterkin said it was his side’s best performance as a team and they were looking forward to a big crowd at Howe Park to support them against Morpeth Bulls on Saturday from 2pm.