A brilliant second half display saw Chorley score three times without reply to kill off the stubborn challenge of relegation-threatened FC United.
The undoubted star of the Magpies’ show was mercurial striker Josh Wilson who bagged two opportunist goals and, after laying on Chorley’s fourth goal, was only denied a deserved hat-trick by a wonderful save in the closing minutes.
Jamie Vermiglio’s men got off to the perfect start, taking the lead on seven minutes.
Lewis Baines’ centre was inexplicably dropped by United keeper Lloyd Allinson, allowing Wilson to tee up Marcus Carver for a simple finish.
But the lead did not last long as a ball into the box on 15 minutes beat the defence, leaving Chris Lynch at the third time of asking to deflect it into the net from a couple of yards.
The rest of the half was evenly contested, with the visitors shading it on chances created.
Wilson tested Allinson’s reflexes and Andy Teague glanced an effort over the bar from Wilson’s initial header.
The second half was a different story as Chorley gradually took command to lead after 61 minutes.
Adam Blakeman floated over a corner and Wilson rose to head home from some eight yards.
Four minutes later Chorley had their third. Wilson again found the net following a powerful drive from distance by Matt Challoner which Allinson could only parry into the path of the irrepressible striker.
Inevitably, Wilson was involved again as the Magpies finished off the contest with fifteen minutes remaining, his defence-splitting through-ball clinically buried by Carver.
Recently-signed Tony McMillan saved superbly as United strove to improve the scoreline before Allinson’s wonder save denied Wilson the hat-trick his man-of-the-match display would have richly merited.
The Magpies’ important victory keeps them right on the tails of the league leaders; with a game in hand, Chorley remain three points behind Bradford Park Avenue who also recorded an emphatic away win at Guiseley.
Results elsewhere mean that there is now a four-point gap between the Magpies and their closest pursuers.