It appeared harmless enough, but when Hamilton Thunder�s David Simpson beat �keeper Dino Perri of St. Catharines Wolves in a goalmouth scramble at the 51st minute mark for what turned out to be the only goal of the game, it may also turn out to be one of the more important strikes of the season.
The 1-0 victory for Hamilton in the only game played in the Canadian Professional Soccer League Wednesday night gave the Thunder a commanding lead at the top of the Western Conference standings and put St. Catharines Wolves in a precarious position in their late-season bid for third place and the playoffs.
Hamilton Thunder (9-2-4 WLT for 31 points) leap to what looks like an insurmountable 7-point lead over second place Brampton Hitmen (7-4-3 for 24 points), while St. Catharines Wolves are in third, but only just with a 7-7-2 record at 23 points.
Toronto Croatia are just four points behind St. Catharines, but they have two games in hand.
So, while the season closes in on playoff time, it looks like it�s the third place positions that are going to be in doubt and up for grabs until the regular season league games are completed at the end of September.