Austin on form as Caley Jags hit Sons for five

Nathan Austin was on target twice for Inverness.

Nathan Austin’s hat-trick helped Caley Thistle come from behind to defeat Dumbarton 5-1 at Caledonian Stadium.

Further goals from Aaron Doran and Iain Vigurs helped Inverness recover from the early setback of falling behind through Grant Gallacher’s goal.

The result keeps John Robertson’s men eight points adrift of the promotion play-offs, ahead of their next game away to the Sons on Tuesday.

Caley Thistle were without suspended trio Carl Tremarco, Coll Donaldson and Charlie Trafford, with Collin Seedorf, Riccardo Calder and Doran drafted in.

Inverness had some early bursts, with Iain Vigurs sending a free kick narrowly wide, however the visitors took the lead on 13 minutes when Andrew Stirling got the better of Calder before cutting the ball back for Gallacher to thump home from 14 yards.

The hosts made the perfect response by grabbing a leveller only four minutes later however, when Doran lashed home from 25 yards.

Caley Jags went in search of another goal, with Liam Polworth sending a fizzing strike just wide from a similar distance on 36 minutes, while Doran sent another effort well past the post.

At the other end Stirling continued to look dangerous, whipping a menacing ball across goal that narrowly evaded the run of Calum Gallacher.

Inverness edged ahead four minutes before the break through a well-worked goal, with Doran slipping the ball through for Austin to round Scott Gallacher and squeeze it home from a tight angle.

Caley Thistle spurned a fine chance to give themselves breathing space two minutes into the second half when Polworth slipped a shot wide.

The third goal was not far away however, with a neat move seeing George Oakley tee up Polworth who lifted the ball over Gallacher to set up Austin to tap home for his second.

Caley Thistle made the points safe on 63 minutes when Joe Chalmers’ free kick fell for Vigurs to poke home from close-range, before Austin completed his hat-trick with a well angled finish on an ultimately comfortably afternoon for Robertson’s men.