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Friday 1 May 2015
St. Ann’s Rangers, thanks to some shabby goalkeeping on the opposite end, avoided a winless 2014-2015 Digicel Pro League season by defeating third placed finishers Defence Force 2-1 in the final match of the campaign on Friday in the first match of a Round Three Match Day Nine double header at the Hasely Crawford Stadium.
While in the second match, which saw referee Rodphin Harris issue a red card to either side, league runners-up W Connection (49 points) – six points behind league champions Central FC (55 points) – were defeated 3-2 by San Juan Jabloteh (31 points), who remained in a sixth place finish ahead of Police FC (27 points) and Caledonia AIA (26 points) in seventh and eight places respectively.
Connection’s starting line-up included 14-year-old prodigy Isaiah Hudson, the youngest player to ever take the field in the history of the Pro League, and 16-year-old full-back Keston Julien, who both serve the “Savonetta Boys” Under-17 and Reserve teams.
Connection started brightly thanks to a first half double by forward Jerrel Britto, taking his league scoring tally to 14 goals this season.
Britto, latching onto a neat Hashim Arcia pass inside the box in the 11th minute, executed a neat chip over Jabloteh’s Jamaican goalkeeper Shane Mattis, who was left beaten on the floor as Connection celebrated a 1-0 advantage.
Mattis was in trouble again in the 22nd minute, only able to push a 35-yard free-kick by Alvin Jones back into play but redeemed himself with an excellent low diving save to deny Hudson, a former Barcelona FC and AS Roma academy triallist.
However the Jabloteh goalie, who produced a save at full stretch to deny Arcia in the 72nd minute, was left to dry in the 27th minute when an unmarked Britto blasted in a half volley from near the back post for a 2-0 Connection cushion after a poor attempt to clear a Neil Benjamin cross landed the ball into his path.
But Jabloteh, led by 23-year-old former Connection player Johan Peltier, tied the scores in the first half before a superb second half winner by Tyrone Charles ended the match 3-2 in favour of coach Keith Jeffrey’s self-proclaimed “San Juan Kings”.
Peltier, unleashed by a pass from Charles in the 35th minute, shook off his challengers inside the box before firing low to beat Connection’s 23-year-old St. Kitts and Nevis international goalkeeper Julani Archibald with his third league goal this season for Jabloteh to reduce the deficit 1-2.
Two minutes later and coach Stuart Charles Fevrier’s Connection were in trouble again when defender Mekeil Williams' push on Peltier sent the Jabloteh midfielder to ground inside the box as he attempted to make his way towards goal. Referee Harris immediately pointed to the spot and awarded Williams (M) a yellow card but was forced to reach for his red card after being told off by the defender. Harris was also forced to show consecutive yellow cards to Jabloteh’s Damian Williams in the 90th minute after ruling a foul against the Jamaican midfielder who failed to keep his cool.
More drama ensued as Harris ordered a retake of the penalty with Connection guilty of encroachment after Archibald had made a low save to his right to deny Jabloteh’s Jamaican midfielder Adrian Reid.
But Reid on the second attempt in the 40th minute made no mistake to put his kick out of Archibald’s reach for a 2-2 score before the break. It was the Jamaican’s first league goal of the season.
Jabloteh, who held the “Savonetta Boys” 1-1 in Round One but were edged 1-0 in Round Two, finally grabbed the winner in the 76th minute.
Charles, set alight by a Peltier pass on the right, showed off excellent speed to enter the before blowing past goalkeeper Julani Archibald and hitting into an exposed net for his fifth league goal of the season in Jabloteh colours for the 3-2 finish. Charles also scored two league goals earlier this season while representing North East Stars.
Another former club of Charles, Rangers, had celebrated their biggest outing of the season, picking up the scalp of Defence Force, the side that won 3-2 in Round One before mauling them 7-0 in Round Two under previous coach Jason Spence.
After attempts by Rangers forward Jameel Antoine and midfielder Sedale Mc Lean in the 13th and 32nd minutes, respectively, and Defence Force forward Richard Roy in the 13th minute were all denied by the frame, the St. Ann’s club, coached by Ron La Forest, opened the scoring in the 42nd minute.
David Williams, with his first top flight goal, lifted a Mc Lean pass over Defence Force goalkeeper Andre Marchan before side stepping defender Jelani Felix to hit into an open net for a 1-0 lead.
But Jorsling, taking his league scoring tally 21 goals at the top of the scorers’ list this season and equalling his personal best in a season, levelled the scores 1-1 in stoppage time of the first half, with his 136th career Pro League goal, by driving a low shot off a Jerwyn Balthazar cross to beat Rangers goalie Christopher Biggette.
However a terrible mistake by Marchan in the 83rd minute to spill the ball into his own net after failing to keep grip on a floating 30-yard attempt by Sayid Freitas, handed Rangers a 2-1 win.
Defence Force, who had already consolidated their hold on third position, finished the season with 39 points, six clear of North East Stars and Point Fortin Civic, in fourth and fifth positions respectively with 33 points each. While Rangers, at an all-time low, finished the season with 5 points from 24 matches.
Action will continue on Saturday 2 May from 4 pm at the Larry Gomes Stadium with North East Stars against Caledonia AIA before the final league match on Tuesday 5 May between Point Fortin Civic and Police FC from 8 pm at the Ato Boldon Stadium following a 6 pm clash between Caledonia AIA and St. Ann’s Rangers in the qualifier match for the 2015 Digicel Pro Bowl.
Digicel Pro League 2014-2015
Round Three Match Day Nine results
Friday 1 may 2015
Hasely Crawford Stadium
Defence Force 1 (Devorn Jorsling 45'+1) vs St. Ann’s Rangers 2 (David Williams 42', Sayid Freitas 83')
San Juan Jabloteh 3 (Johan Peltier 35', Adrian Reid 40' penalty, Tyrone Charles 76') vs W Connection 2 (Jerrel Britto 11', 27')
Upcoming Round Three Match Day Nine fixtures
Saturday 2 May 2015
Larry Gomes Stadium
North East Stars vs Caledonia AIA—4 pm
Tuesday 5 May 2015
Ato Boldon Stadium
Point Fortin Civic vs Police FC—8pm
Teams at the Hasely Crawford Stadium on Friday
Defence Force: 28.Andre Marchan (GK), 6.Rodell Elcock, 2.Glynn Franklyn (19.Dexter Pacheco 80th minute), 3.Keston Williams, 9.Devorn Jorsling, 13.Marvin Jones (10.Josimar Belgrave 70th minute), 22.Jamali Garcia, 23.Kerry Joseph, 26.Richard Roy (16.Kellon Serrette 66th minute), 90.Jerlani Felix, 99.Jerwyn Balthazar
Unused substitutes: 17.Ross Russell Jr., 21.Aklie Edwards, 24.Brandon Joseph, 25.Sheldon Clarke (GK)
Coach: Marvin Gordon
St. Ann's Rangers: 3.Al Davidson, 7.Sayid Freitas, 8.Sedale Mc Lean, 9.Keron Cornwall, 13.Jameel Antoine, 33.Devon Modeste (11.Josh Toussaint 60th minute), 15.Seon Thomas, 16.David Williams, 22.Christopher Biggette, 35.Ryan O'Neil
Unused substitutes: 45.Kadeem Corbin, 31.Joshua Sylvester, 26.Nicholas Dillon, 4.Jelani Peters
Coach: Ron La Forest
Match Referee: Crystal Sobers
San Juan Jabloteh: 4.Garth Thomas, 6.Dario Holmes, 7.Andell Noray (21.Neil Mitchell 69th minute), 9.Johan Peltier (Yellow Card), 11.Damian Williams (Yellow Card + Yellow Card), 15.Isaiah Mc Intyre (Yellow Card), 20.Nkosi David, 24.Adrian Reid (Yellow Card), 29.Tyrone Charles (28.Kendes Garcia 88th minute), 30.Shane Mattis (GK), 25.Micah Lansiquot (17.Fabien Reid 73rd minute)
Unused substitutes: 8.Newtown Sterling, 18.Jevon Morris, 36.Raheem Belgrave (GK), 27.Tekay Hoyce
Coach: Keith Jeffrey
W Connection: 3.Gerard Williams, 5.Mekeil Williams (Yellow Card + Red Card), 8.Yhon Stiven Reyes Lopez (11.Tremain Shayn Paul 73rd minute), 12.Jerrel Britto, 14.Hashim Arcia, 18.Julani Archibald, 19.Leslie Joel Russell, 32.Isaiah Hudson (40.Jomal Williams 64th minute), 37.Keston Julien (2.Kurt Frederick 46th minute), 39.Alvin Jones, 65.Neil Benjamin Jr.
Unused substitutes: 21.Maleik Carlos De Freitas-Gray, 22.Aquelius Sylvester (GK), 26.Maurice Ford, 27.Shannon Gomez
Coach: Stuart Charles Fevrier
Match Referee: Rodphin Harris
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