Delano Sam-Yorke scored a brace on his competitive return to the Laithwaite’s Community Stadium as Woking came from behind to beat Torquay United 3-1 on Tuesday evening. Giancarlo Gallifuoco put the visitors ahead in the 28th minute with his third goal in four games before Woking academy graduate Sam-Yorke completed the turnaround with two goals in nine minutes shortly after half-time. Watford loanee Dennon Lewis then sealed off a fine man-of-the-match performance with Woking’s third as Garry Hill’s side got their second consecutive home win of the season.Despite sitting in the bottom four of the National League, Woking started the brighter of the two sides.
Fabio Saraiva, who was the one and only change from Saturday’s 1-1 draw at Guiseley, tested Torquay goalkeeper Brendan Moore with a volley in the opening stages.
Gozie Ugwu, leading the line with the returning Sam-Yorke, then fired his 20-yard effort over the crossbar as Woking’s chances went begging.
They were left to rue these missed opportunities, when the visitors took the lead against the run of play. Dan Sparkes’ free-kick from the right-wing found Nathan Blissett, but former Torquay goalkeeper Michael Poke denied him with a super reaction save.
However, summer signing Gallifuoco was there to pounce on the loose ball to net his third goal since moving from A-League side Melbourne Victory in the summer.
Gulls striker Jamie Reid, on-loan from League Two side Exeter, hit the side netting with his shot from an acute angle as Woking felt aggrieved to goal into the interval behind.
A rejuvenated Cards side started the second half full of confidence and it took Hill’s side just five minutes to equalise.
Jake Caprice’s cross fizzed across the six-yard box and Ugwu squared it across to Sam-Yorke to prod home the simplest of finishes to net his first goal since returning from Forest Green Rovers.
The striker then completed a phenomenal turnaround in the 59th minute, with Sam-Yorke netting his and his side’s second in front of the Leslie Gosden Stand.
Full-back Caprice fired another low cross into the penalty area and found Lewis, whose blocked shot fell straight to Sam-Yorke and the striker holed it into an empty net to put Hill’s side ahead.
The Cards’ captain Keiran Murtagh was inches away from adding a third, but his long-range effort from the left-wing smashed the top of the crossbar with Moore beaten.
However, Dennon Lewis netted Woking’s third four minutes from time, as he raced onto substitute Chike Kandi’s through ball and clipped his left-footed effort in off the underside of the crossbar to secure a much-needed win for the Cards.
Woking have now picked up back-to-back home wins for the first time this season and face Wrexham at the Laithwaite’s on Saturday full of confidence that they can move out of the bottom four.
Woking XI: Poke; Essam, Jones, Saah; Caprice, Murtagh, Saraiva (Carter 82’), Ralph; Lewis; Ugwu (Penny 85’), Sam-Yorke (Kandi 70’).
Torquay United XI: Moore; Verma, Gallifuoco, McGinty, Rowe-Turner; Ward (Scrivens 46’), Richards, Young, Sparkes (Chaney 70’); Reid (Williams 57’), Blissett.
Words: Scott Taylor
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