Second-half strikes from Josh Koroma and Macauley Bonne put the O’s ahead and wrapped up the three points late in the second half to see the game end 2-0.
Gateshead got the game underway at a wet Breyer Group Stadium and the first chance of the game fell to the visitors, but Gregg Olley watched his 25-yard effort trickle wide of Dean Brill’s net.
The O’s responded well, Joe Widdowson’s low cross found its way to Sam Ling who arrived late in the box but couldn’t keep his first time shot from missing the target.
Josh Koroma was next to try his luck for the O’s, the forward collected Marvin Ekpiteta’s knockdown and attempted to place the ball neatly beyond Pears, but Mike Williamson did well to recover and head the ball clear.
Jon Mellish of Gateshead almost hit beyond his own ‘keeper following James Dayton’s whipped corner, unfortunately for Orient the ball flashed just over the bar.
Moments later, Josh Koroma picked the ball up on the left wing and cut on to his right foot in an attempt to bend the ball into the top corner but missed the target by a matter of inches.
Orient should’ve taken the lead with a minute left to play of the half, Jobi McAnuff broke down the left wing and found Koroma who took a touch and hit a wonderful strike on goal from 30-yards, but the ball crashed back off the bar and to safety to bring a close to the first 45 minutes of play.
The O’s began the second half in lively fashion, the visitors were put under mountains of pressure when the home side forcefully won three successive corners. Ling rose highest in the box to meet the third, but headed wide of the near post.
Just when the game began to even out, danger man Koroma produced a spark of magic to cut in from the left, evade two challenges and fire beyond Pears in the Gateshead net to put the O’s ahead.
Gateshead almost pulled a goal back through substitute Steven Rigg when he met with Scott Barrow’s cross 8-yards from goal. Brill was positioned well to hold the ball and safely.
The visitors came close again, this time through Tom White who met Barrow’s cross with a volleyed effort from 20-yards, Brill was relieved to see the ball bounce wide through the crowd of bodies in the area.
Six minutes of the game remained when Craig Clay broke into the area from right back and squeezed the ball to Bonne, who dug out a shot but Pears was equal to it as he clawed the ball on to the crossbar.
Newly introduced James Alabi proved a handful for Gateshead after he held the ball up and played in James Brophy, but his first touch gave the visitors the chance to recover and make the challenge to stop the ball reaching the target.
Gateshead pressured the O’s into conceding successive corners but the back five stood firm to defend the lead.
In the last minute of the game, Alabi was alert to pressure Barrow into a mistake. The forward then advanced into the box and unselfishly squared the ball to his strike partner Bonne who slammed home to wrap up the three points.
ORIENT: Brill, Ling (Lawless 68), Ekpiteta, Coulson, Widdowson, McAnuff, Clay Gorman (Brophy 75), Dayton (Alabi 86), Koroma, Bonne
SUBS: Janata, Happe
BOOKED: Widdowson (69)
GOALS: Koroma (58), Bonne (90)
GATESHEAD: Pears, Tinkler, Kerr, Williamson, Mellish (O’Donnell 77), Barrow, White, Olley, Molyneux (Rigg 64), Armstrong, Boden
SUBS: Foden, Hunter, Devitt
BOOKED: Olley (16), Barrow (70)
RED: Olley (90+4)
REFEREE: Carl Brook
ATTENDANCE: 4,636 (51)