A hat-trick from Tim Smits kept Olympic FC in touch with the league leaders following a 5-2 win over Western Pride at Briggs Road Complex on Saturday.
Pride opened the scoring early before Smits, Kazuya Ito and Danny Byrne delivered the next five goals to consign Pride to a third straight defeat.
Olympic had the hosts under the pump early as a relentless series of crosses forced Pride to repeatedly clear their lines.
However, the hosts soon drew first blood as mid-season recruit Todd Norris turned home a pass from Harrison Sawyer for his first PlayStation® 4 NPL Queensland goal.
Further chances followed for the hosts as Norris forced a save from Matt Acton and Joe Duckworth skimmed the crossbar.
Olympic drew level midway through the half though as Smits opened his account – making a sharp run behind the defence before poking home a composed finish.
The visitors applied further pressure as Ito and Byrne both forced saves from Pride goalkeeper Bon Scott midway through the half.
A goal mouth scramble late in the half saw Pride denied on the line three times before Olympic edged ahead before the break – Smits delivering a pin-point lobbed finish.
After the restart Pride continued to spurn chances as Sawyer saw a shot cleared off the line and Duckworth blazed wide of the target.
Olympic took advantage just after the hour when Smits controlled on his chest from Ito’s long pass before delivering a sharp finish on the turn – doubling his season’s tally to six goals.
Two goals in quick time then sealed the result for the visitors ten minutes from time as Ito steered home Byrne’s pass, before the Olympic skipper also added his name to the scoresheet.
Peter Drager netted a late consolation for Pride in the final minutes following an industrious run down the right.
The result marks Pride’s fourth match without a win and sees the early season league leaders losing touch with the top four finals places.
Speaking post-match, Olympic coach Jim Bellas said Smits haul was just reward for his attacking ace after a lean return in recent matches.
“Timmy has been working hard at training the whole all year and tonight it’s paid off for him – he’s worked hard and is always in the right areas,” he said.
Pride captain Jesse Rigby said had his side taken their earlier chances the points may well have been theirs.
“Going in 1-0 (up) they can always come back, whereas if we bury those couple (of chances) it could be a different story,” he said.
Western Pride FC 2 (Todd NORRIS 9’, Peter DRAGER 87’)
Olympic FC 5 (Tim SMITS 23’ 44’ 65’, Kazuya ITO 79’, Danny BYRNE 81’)