Redlands United ran riot after half-time to overcome a two-goal deficit and emerge 5-2 winners over Olympic FC at Cleveland Showgrounds on Friday night.
The hosts trailed 2-0 at the break but stunned the competition’s third-placed side with three goals within 10 minutes of the restart to move into eighth.
Olympic dominated for much of the first-half, opening the scoring after 15 minutes when Michael Lee’s shot took a wicked deflection to wrongfoot Brendan White.
Danny Byrne, Kazuya Ito and Scott Bow all had chances to extend the visitors’ advantage but were unable to beat White, while fellow ‘keeper Matt Acton was kept busy at the other end.
Tim Smits ensured Olympic entered the sheds in a buoyant mood by turning home Lee’s initial effort to make it 2-0 in the 40th minute.
The Red Devils refused to fold though and immediately turned the match on its head in a stunning 20-minute period.
Elliott Ronto first pulled one back by finishing well after a series of blocks, before Lyndon Dykes levelled proceedings two minutes later as he finished coolly in a one-on-one.
The incredible comeback was complete in the 54th minute when young defender Grant Brix won a penalty, allowing Graham Fyfe to convert for a 3-2 lead.
Smits and Byrne both had opportunities to revive Olympic but the home side were far from finished as Dykes found Igor Sao Jose for a simple finish following defensive miscommunication to make it 4-2.
The visitors’ headaches worsened with substitutes Costa Psaros shown a straight just three minutes after being introduced while Fyfe found time to add a second and his side’s fifth by shooting into the bottom far corner in the closing minutes.
Speaking after the match, Redlands United captain James Donnelly felt his side had a duty to turn the match around at half-time.
“We were a shadow of our former selves so the second half we really had to put things right not just for ourselves but also for the people watching,” Donnelly said.
Olympic captain Danny Byrne believed the visitors became too impatient in trying to kill the contest.
“We lost a bit of shape, we tried to chase the game when all we really needed to do was keep possession and let them come at us,” Byrne said.
Redlands United FC 5 (Elliott RONTO 48’ Lyndon DYKES 50’ Graham FYFE p.54’, 88’ Igor SAO JOSE 66’)
Olympic FC 2 (Michael LEE 15’ Tim SMITS 40’)