Northern Fury recorded their second straight win after seeing off a determined SWQ Thunder 3-1 at Clive Berghofer Stadium on Saturday night.
Strikes to Fury’s Corey Waples and Thunder’s Keagan Sheridan saw the team’s level at half-time, before goals to Joe Thornton and Jarrod Lee in the final quarter hour sealed the result for Fury.
The win continues Fury’s late-season tilt at a top four finish and sees the Townsville side now move to fifth place in the standings.
The contest began energetically as both sides enjoyed forward positions in a free-flowing opening before Fury struck the post just prior to the quarter hour.
However, it proved only a temporary set-back as the visitors fashioned the opening goal only three minutes later on the counter attack – Waples delivering a composed low finish for his second goal of the campaign.
The hosts maintained their composure and drew level immediately prior to the break when Sheridan headed home from a free-kick for his first goal since joining Thunder this year.
Goalkeeper Pierce Clark kept Thunder in the contest after the restart with some telling saves as the hosts failed to make the most of their chances at the other end.
With a quarter hour remaining Fury edged ahead from the penalty spot – Thornton sending Clark the wrong way with the spot kick for his second goal in as many weeks.
Lee then capitalised in time added on as Thunder sought to chase the game with a crafty finish inside a crowded penalty area for his first ever PlayStation 4 NPL Queensland goal.
Speaking post match, Fury coach Ian Ferguson said his side were fortunate to not drop points against the league’s bottom-placed side.
“The way we played today we were second best to everything and I thought Thunder put in a good performance,” Ferguson said.
Thunder coach Chris Wilkes said his side had deserved to get something from the game but had suffered for the penalty call late in the second half.
“A terrible decision and it’s hard to explain to the boys when they’ve worked so hard and got so close,” Wilkes said.
SWQ Thunder FC 1 (Keagen SHERIDAN 45’)
Northern Fury FC 3 (Corey WAPLES 16’, Joe THORNTON 76’p, Jarrod LEE 90+1’)