The BVB academy squad are two matches from the U19 Group 3 title after their fourteenth consecutive victory, a run stretching back to the first week of January. Josef Odenthal hit a fine hat-trick in the 5-2 win at Essen, with Osman Varol and Josef Bungert also scoring.
Varol stroked a penalty into the top corner after quarter of an hour to open the scoring before a Bungert brace extended the lead to 3-0 before the break. Within thirty seconds of the restart, Bungert headed home a cross to complete his treble.
Dirk Bauer was denied a stonewall penalty on the hour mark, with the hosts immediately breaking forwards and Erhan Weigl scored for Essen to make it 4-1. Bungert restored the four-goal lead seven minutes later with a free-kick, before Serkan Schönfeld pulled another back for Essen in stoppage time.
Leverkusen won 4-1 at Düsseldorf to remain within three points of Dortmund, with just two matches remaining. Dortmund play in the youth cup final next weekend, before the final matches at home to Oberhausen and Gladbach. Leverkusen also play their final matches at home, facing Duisburg and Essen respectively.